Tutu-clad runners support local cancer survivor - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Tutu-clad runners support local cancer survivor

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Dozens of tutu-clad runners hit the streets Saturday to take a stand after a magazine published a negative blurb about a local cancer survivor's race attire.

Monika Allen and a friend ran the L.A. Marathon last year wearing tutus -- and this week found their photo was used and their outfits mocked in Self Magazine.

"It's great to see everybody out here running in a tutu and having fun," Allen said.

Monika Allen is ready to have some fun with friends after an emotional roller coaster of a week.

Her supporters showed up for a fundraising run just days after Self Magazine bashed a photo of the cancer survivor and her friend in a tutu.

"It didn't even cross my mind that they would write anything negative about tutus," friend Tara Baize said.

They gave permission to use the L.A. Marathon photo but Allen and her friend Tara Baize had no idea the tutus they make for charity would be called "lame." 

"We were shocked how it was used and we were just hurt and offended -- and then things just kind of rolled from there," Allen said.

National outrage forced the editor-in-chief of the women's magazine to personally apologize for a joke that Allen described as painful. 

"That picture in particular was when my friend and I were running the L.A. Marathon when I was going through chemo so it was a really big day for me -- and for you to make fun of that is really hurtful," Allen said.

But Saturday's run at Torrey Pines State Park is about moving forward.

Even some guys got in touch with their feminine side to help Monika and Tara's Glam Runner organization find the silver lining.

"It's given us this platform to talk about the charity we're involved in and to get people involved and supporting and just being yourself and lifting other women up," Baize said.

The two women only make tutus through Glam Runner to raise money for their local youth development charity - Girls on the Run.

Since the Self Magazine photo controversy they've raised more than $4,000 to help inspire young girls to be joyful and healthy.

That's almost as much as the $5,600 they've raised over three years that went toward getting girls in competitive teams.

Monika Allen appreciates the magazine apology but even more she appreciates the support from across the country. 

"So many good things have come out of this - this has been nothing but positive energy towards us and Girls on the Run," Allen said.  

Glam Runner has made about 2,000 tutus over the past three years but that number is sure to go up. Allen's Glam Runner Facebook page has added about 34,000 "likes" since the controversy made national headlines.
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