Boogie Strong in 2021: Week 1

Questions about training methods? Go online to or send an email to

While the 2021 CFJC-TV Boogie the Bridge event will not be held due to the pandemic, organizers are hoping a sea of runners and walkers can gather for Boogie in 2022.

On that note, an online fundraising campaign has been launched to help keep Boogie going. Click here for more information.

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Despite the a second year of postponement, Boogie and RunClub founder Jo Berry has urged participants to continue training on their own as it is more important than ever to pay attention to health, in body and mind.

The annual event, which sees participants run and walk various distances, has raised more than $1 million for charity since its inception more than two decades ago.

Kamloops This Week will continue to publish, online and in each print edition, a column by Berry, along with weekly updates from three participants.

James MacDonald of Western Canada Theatre, Kayla Pepper with the provincial government and Kayla Derkach of the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group are writing about their experiences as they continue to train for their goal.

We hope you find inspiration in these insights and that they prompt you to do what you can to ensure your physical and mental health is in as peak shape as possible. The community continues on RunClub's Facebook page because outside isn't cancelled.

Jo Berry

Founder of Boogie and RunClub

The pandemic’s global social and economic fallout hit Kamloopsians hard a year ago. It hit my coaching company and our community heart project, Boogie the Bridge, like a tsunami. 

As governments started shutting down airports, schools and business around the world in early March 2020, we had to make the correct decision to shut down Boogie and all of our RunClub clinics and events.

My fear and anxiety for my family, teams and community was compounded by the immense, sudden financial loss taking place within my small business. This also compounded my concern about what this would do to our non-profit Boogie and support to our charities.

Like many of you, last spring left me paralyzed with fear, emotionally drained and struggling to make decisions or ask for help. The flight or fight stress response was in full swing. So I turned to my most reliable stress-alleviating practice — mindful running.

Once again, movement helped ground my mental health and became the framework of what needed to be done. Movement once again gave me strength and resilience to look after my family, serve the community and take care of our RunClub family and Boogie community. 

 Never before has  community, connection, movement and mental health been more important. With the incredible support from our sponsors, we all came together this past year to keep the Boogie message alive.

We pivoted all the programming into a virtual format (eight days of Boogie and online training) and will take this energy into 2021.

Our theme this year is Boogie Strong. We can’t wait to see you sporting your Boogie red with pride, passion and connection. Together, we can keep our  Kamloops signature event going.

James MacDonald
James MacDonald

Artistic director of Western Canada Theatre

This week, we mark the one-year anniversary of the pandemic shutting down Canada.  

The advent of spring is usually a sign of better times ahead — nice weather, time off work, travel, social gatherings and outdoor activity.

Last year, the rug was pulled out from underneath us and we entered spring with trepidation and fear. This year, tentatively, we can happily look forward to a summer of interaction and activity. 

 Theatre has a transformative power to improve the mental and physical health of our community. I believe the inability to gather for arts and sporting events has been one of our society’s biggest challenges. At WCT, we can’t wait until we can bring our city together again in joy and inspiration. 

 We can also recognize how our reduced level of physical activity has challenged our positive worldview.

This past winter, I played a little tennis, skied a few days and hit the treadmill at least once a month (!), but ultimately my body feels soft and broken down.

I recognize how this feeling of being physically out of shape has contributed to my own sense of not feeling mentally or intellectually sharp. 

 The pandemic separated us from each other and from our own well-being. We sat on our couches in solitude, staring at TVs or computers. We ate too much — and not well. This spring is an opportunity for us to reconnect with our friends, our community, and with ourselves. And to get out into the sunshine and run. I can’t wait. 

Kayla Pepper
Kayla Pepper

Emergency manager with the province of British Columbia

Hi KTW readers.

I’m an emergency manager with the province, a recent MA in leadership graduate and a stepmom to two teenage boys.

In 2018, I completed my yoga teacher training with the Happyness Centre, but after 2020’s whirlwind of Netflix binges, online meetings, and a bonus 15 pounds, it was time for a physical, emotional and spiritual tune-up.

So, in January, I laced up my runners and began my first in-person RunClub clinic. RunClub is synonymous with Jo Berry’s mantra “Movement is Change.”

In that first clinic, I learned that running and walking allows us to safely distance and connect with community beyond our four walls.

It allows us to feel the rhythm of our feet and breath and to extend gratitude for the beauty that is Kamloops and the unceded, traditional territory of the Tk’emlups te Secwépemc peoples. Movement helps us celebrate what we can do.

Thanks to my RunClub coaches, I waddled/walked/jogged my way through the 5K Sweet Clinic and am excited to join the 5K Bold Clinic this time around.

A bit quicker, a bit more challenging, but what matters most is showing up — in whatever pace, shape or form that might take.

Showing up each week is the greatest act of self-love, self-respect and self-worth — it also supports us to show up for others in a good way.

Movement. Is. Change. I hope you will join us.

Kayla Derkach
Kayla Derkach

Promotions/on-air at Jim Pattison Broadcast Group

I have joined the Boogie team behind the scenes by stepping into a social/marketing role.

It has allowed me some insight into the inner workings of Boogie and how it all comes together — from the co-ordinators to sponsors to volunteers to participants — and how hard everyone works to make Boogie the Bridge happen. 

 As for Boogie training, I’ve never done it. I have never created the time for the opportunity to see what it’s all about — until this year. Thanks, COVID-19.

Like a lot of people in this city, I’ve been hit with COVID fatigue and didn’t realize how impactful something like that is on your health.

The struggle is real in juggling this pandemic while still being mindful of your health — physically, mentally and spiritually. The reason I am so excited to start Boogie training is because of the culture of it and this being an opportunity to flip the script in how I have been dealing with this pandemic.

Boogie training is an opportunity for positivity in my life.  Boogie training is also a great opportunity to work toward your fitness goals for 2021.

It’s an eight-week run/walk program that will help to prepare you to tackle Boogie the Bridge. 

I am excited to see where this overall Boogie the Bridge journey will take me and, if you’d like to experience it firsthand for yourself, registration is easy.

Just go online to


Boogie Week 1 training
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