Boston’s Susan G. Komen 3-Day Canceled For 2014

The group's three day, 60-mile walk won't happen next year in Boston and six additional cities.

The start of a Susan G. Komen 3-day. Start line photo via aceshot1 /

The start of a Susan G. Komen race. Start line photo via aceshot1 /

Susan G. Komen For the Cure, the nation’s leading breast cancer treatment, research, and support non-profit, has canceled its annual Susan G. Komen 3-Day race in cities across the country, including Boston, for 2014.

The race, a 60-mile walk over three days that the foundation uses to raise money and awareness for breast cancer, will not happen in Boston, Tampa Bay, Arizona, Chicago, Cleveland, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. next year, though it will continue as planned in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth, Michigan, Philadelphia, San Diego, and Seattle. This year’s Boston race is slated for July 26 to 28.

The cancellation likely comes as a shock to many Komen supporters, as the 3-Day is one of the organization’s largest—participants must raise at least $2,300—and best-loved fundraisers. So why were so many races canceled? A report in the Tampa Bay Times says, “Officials cited ‘economic uncertainty over the past four years,'” and the fact that “participation levels in the past few years … could not ‘financially sustain’ the event to continue in 14 cities.”

The breast cancer organization has dealt with scrutiny and a decrease in donation money following its decision last year to withdraw $680,000 in grants to Planned Parenthood, a choice that was later reversed. Still, the controversy likely accounts, at least in part, for the 19 percent drop in participation at the organization’s Race for the Cure event from last year to this year.

Questions are swirling in our minds about how much fundraising money the organization will lose as a result of canceling these races, what impact this decision will have on the foundation, and whether there will be public outcry. Either way, it’s a shame that one of the nation’s largest, most well-known charities was forced to make such a decision.

Updated 5:38 p.m.: The Massachusetts chapter of Susan G. Komen For the Cure issued a statement about the cancellations this afternoon. The statement, from Ronni Cohen-Boyar, the executive director of the Massachusetts chapter, says:

Like you, we are saddened to see the 3-Day leave our community in 2014. While we did receive some of the proceeds from the 3-Day, our major fundraiser and primary revenue source is our Race for the Cure, which will be held this fall. With the support of our wonderful donors, this allows us to continue to fund local education, screening and treatment programs right here in the Commonwealth. We encourage those who participated in the 3-Day to join us at our Massachusetts Race for the Cure this fall.