Escondido, CA

Fifth annual Kickin’ It Challenge will bring young soccer players together to fight breast cancer

Young soccer players wear pink to show their support for battling breast cancer.

Young soccer players wear pink to show their support for battling breast cancer.

The fifth annual Kickin’ It Chal­lenge soccer tournament will bring San Diego and Southern California’s youth soccer teams together to help fight the battle against breast cancer on Saturday, June 18 through Sun­day June 19 at Frances Ryan Park in Escondido. Registration is open until May 15.

The companion Kickin’ It Chal­lenge Gala Bash celebration will be returning for its second year on Fri­day, June 24, at Old Poway Park from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tickets are $75 which includes a silent auction, din­ner, beer/wine, and dancing. Tickets are on sale now through June 15.

During the two-day soccer tourna­ment, about 2,000 youth soccer play­ers on 120 teams will be decked out in pink to take the field to participate in games that “Unite in the Fight” against breast cancer. The goal is to have fun while making a difference for the soc­cer moms in their lives as well as other San Diegans battling the disease.

“Our Kickin’ It Challenge brings family and friends together for a fabulous weekend full of soccer fun, enthusiasm, learning and a chance to give back,” said Bj Kelly, founding director and auction chairman. The chance to give back is more than do­nations but is also awareness.

“Our focus now includes the ever so important awareness Kickin’ It brings to the young players and their fami­lies. The sea of pink covers the field and the participation from the teams shows another power of pink—aware­ness. Our tournament has an impact on everyone that it touches,” said found­ing director, Susan Filippone.

Visit the Kickin’ It Challenge Web­site at to register a team for the tournament; buy tickets for the gala; sponsor the tournament or gala; or to donate silent auction items to “Unite in the Fight.”

One hundred percent of proceeds raised at these events will benefit Su­san G. Komen San Diego (Komen San Diego). Over the last four years, Kickin’ It Challenge events have raised more than $150,000 for Ko­men San Diego, making it one of Ko­men’s largest third-party fundraisers.

“When we learned yet another friend had breast cancer we knew something needed to be done,” said Pam Bickel, founding director and president, Kickin’ It Challenge. “We became good friends through soccer so we thought why couldn’t we help others through soccer?” said Beatrice Cubitt, founding director and vice president, Kickin’ It Challenge.

Registration: Now open. Last day to register is Thursday, May 5. Register and find out more about rules and sched­ules at About Susan G. Komen San Diego

Since its inception in 1995, Susan G. Komen San Diego has raised more than $13 million, becoming San Di­ego County’s largest funder of free breast cancer services and support. It is the only organization providing qualified women the free services they need for every step of the breast cancer journey. For more informa­tion, visit Connect with the organization on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

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