Race for the Cure 2015 welcomes thousands into downtown Portland – OregonLive.com
Race for the Cure brings together thousands of breast cancer survivors and their family, friends and loved ones, along with other supporters, in a fun run and walk in downtown Portland each year. About 16,000 runners and walkers turned out this year, about the same as last year, organizers said.
The goal is to raise $2.5 million for the early detection, survivor support, research and advocacy programs of Susan G. Komen of Oregon and Southwest Washington.
The event had collected more than $2.2 million as of Friday, organizers said, yet more donations tend to flow in over the weekend. The fund-raising will continue through Sept. 30, when the final collection amount will be released.
There was a Race Village near the Morrison Bridge with booths, food and family activities along with a Survivors Tribute with speech and song. The 5K Fun Run began at 8:30 a.m., the 5K Fun Walk started at 8:45 a.m. and the 1-Mile Family Walk set off at 9:15 a.m.
Adrienne San Nicolas, of Vancouver, Washington, spoke passionately during the Survivors Tribute. In a red and white-striped shirt and cap befitting the “Where’s Waldo?” book series, she took her look over-the-top with Groucho Marx glasses and moustache.
She called her look “Where’s Baldo?”, a humorous nod to her hair loss, a side-effect of chemotherapy.
“I wanted to bring hope (to chemotherapy treatments),” she explained of her costume. San Nicolas also handed out toys and trinkets to other patients.
“The chemo room lights up. We have so much fun.”
She has one more chemotherapy treatment, after five-and-a-half months of it.
Her enduring optimism was evident in her Survivors Tribute speech.
“I chose not to fall victim to the anger and fear that this diagnosis can bring. I chose to look past it, to believe that by living life to the fullest this journey was going to change me for the better. Let me tell you, it has.”
San Nicolas wasn’t alone in her delight-inspiring get-up. Six men and boys wandered the Waterfront before the event, clad in pink from head to toe: wigs, tutus, shirts and leggings.
This is their third year taking part in Race for the Cure, and all for their friend Curt Albright, whose wife Deb Albright is a breast cancer survivor.
“If you haven’t been affected by the disease, you will,” said Scott Shirley of Hubbard, one of those visions in pink with added fairy wings and a feather boa.
The hope in their actions, standing in solidarity with their friend, bubbled up as random crowd members excitedly wanted to snap their picture.