Pro skaters Sean Malto, Chris “Cookie” Colbourn, and Theotis Beasley helped Boarding For Breast Cancer (B4BC) lead a mass skating event along a 5-mile stretch of the Des Moines River to Lauridsen Skatepark on Saturday morning, opening the final day of Dew Tour Des Moines 2022 with good vibes for a good cause.
“Our goal is to get as many young women and young men educated on early detection and prevention as possible, and the best place to do that is at action sports events because there’s a lot of young people at Dew Tour who care about their health, staying active, staying strong, and helping their partners identify any health concers,” says Maggie Gonzalez, events and outreach manager for B4BC.
Saturday’s Skate The River in Des Moines followed the 18th annual Skate The Lake event in Lake Tahoe, California the week before, and comes in B4BC’s 25th anniversary year: B4BC celebrated its 25th anniversary during Dew Tour Copper Mountain 2021 in December and has been a Dew Tour partner since the very first event in 2004.
“We call events like today’s Skate The River ‘A Push for Prevention,’” Gonzalez said. “Thirty minutes of exercise three to four days a week can reduce your cancer risk by 30 to 50 percent, so it’s our goal to get people on board and moving their bodies, or doing it for someone they love or in memory or honor of someone who is battling or has battled breast cancer. Five miles on a skateboard isn’t easy, but neither is cancer.
Sean Malto, who competed in Friday night’s Street Final, said the group skate was a great way to raise awareness, and also to get to skate with local fans.
“It’s cool because Dew Tour is all about skateboarding and the contest is a big part of it for sure, but there’s so much more to this life than just skateboarding and it’s great to have an organization like B4BC as a partners: B4BC has been coming to Dew Tour longer than I have! It’s cool that Dew Tour cares about this and it’s great to support such an amazing foundation.”
Like a lot of people who come to Dew Tour, either as competitors or fans, Malto says he first learned about early breast cancer detection from the hands-on display at B4BC’s outreach tent at past events: B4BC invites Dew Tour guests to touch silicone models of breasts to learn to feel for telltale lumps that mean it’s time to visit a doctor immediately.
“Yeah, absolutely, coming to Dew Tour is that first experience for a lot of people and, to be honest, I didn’t know a lot about it myself before B4BC taught me about it at my first Dew Tour,” Malto said. “Breast cancer was never something I’d had to deal with in my life at that time, fortunately, but now it’s one of those things where I’ve had friends and I’ve known people I’ve looked up to who have had to deal with this, so it’s amazing to to be able to have events like this that can make a real difference through skateboarding to educated people about prevention and early detection. It’s a perfect collaboration.”
For more information about early breast cancer detection and prevention, and to support the organization or learn about upcoming events, visit B4BC.org.