Boogie Strong in 2021: Week 7

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.

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


A campaign to raise money to help bring Boogie back to the streets in 2022 is online at If you can help, go to that website and search “Friends of Boogie.” I think the best way to fall in love with a city is through running — connecting with the world as you move from gravel to pavement, trails to neighbourhoods. There’s commitment in that connection.

Jo Berry

Founder, RunClub and Boogie the Bridge

On foot, the relationship with the city becomes deeper. Kamloops is a little city with a big heart, a community of heart-centered souls and a deep desire to come together and help each other out.

There’s a lot of optimism here and sometimes that optimism floods over to make even the most challenging days a lot brighter.

This past Sunday, we kicked off the 8 Days of Boogie. I fell deeper in love with Kamloops this day, first with a RunClub kickoff and then as we chalked the route between Pioneer and Riverside parks. People of all ages stopped to chat, reading the hopeful messages and reflecting on what Boogie means to them.

Runners and walkers Boogied by us with hands in the air, saying, “We are on our Boogie run!”

In stressful times, the world needs Boogie  more than ever. Movement creates a change in our thinking and when we see each other out running and walking (and getting the chance to connect), we feel it directly in the heart.

Our Boogie team loves to create an inclusive environment where everyone can feel cared for and loved. Boogie removes physical and psychological barriers and transforms lives through movement. The pause on Boogie the last two years has been a hardship and has impacted our organization and the charities we support.

This past Sunday, while laying down some inspirational messages, we felt the heart of the city and what Boogie is all about: love, community, kindness and connection.

Grab your family and chalk the Boogie routes. Your heart will feel happy and you will be paying it forward to others as they walk past your messages.

James MacDonald
James MacDonald

Artistic director of Western Canada Theatre

Activity felt great this week. My wife bought me a dollar store knee brace, which has changed my life as tennis and running are virtually pain-free.

Can’t say I fulfilled my commitment to yoga, but being active outside in terrific weather was a boost to the spirits.

I felt pretty proud of our community, too — the robust support for local businesses and restaurants, the vibrant buzz of responsible activity on the sidewalks of Victoria Street and The Shore and the positive spirit of Kamloopsians is shining through, even as the national news is full of shadows. Has anyone ever been more thankful to not live in downtown Toronto? 

Can’t say I’ve dropped too much weight in spite of the increased activity. I guess I have to stop using a twice-weekly 10K as an excuse to justify that second (or third) beer or tub of dark chocolate caramel gelato.

I am reminded again of the importance of collaboration and ensemble in this week’s RunClub, where runners of all ages and backgrounds jog our 10K Sweet at their own level. Every so often, the cheetahs in the group do a “pick-up” on those who are running at a lower pace.

These principles of equity, inclusion and support remind me of how we envision Western Canada Theatre operating on the same principles — access and participation for all.

This week is 8 Days of Boogie, so please get out and enjoy the sunshine and support Boogie the Bridge in the process (

It’s been a tough couple of years for Jo and her team, but they shine through with positivity and community spirit, and deserve all of our support. Boogie is a treasure, and I’m so honoured to be part of it.

Kayla Pepper
Kayla Pepper

Emergency manager with the province of British Columbia

We ran 8K and then waded into the Thompson River for some cold-water therapy — and it felt amazing.

The Boogie spirit was alive and well on the weekend. As our group moseyed from Pioneer Park to Valleyview secondary, folks honked and waved at us. One lady even rolled down her window and shouted, “You inspire me!”

We responded with cheering and clapping because, while we were inspiring her, she was also inspiring us to keep moving. That’s community.

We are in this together, bumbling along and hopefully spreading some kindness and fun. Those who have Boogied in the past know it’s not just about running and walking — it’s also about dancing.

To kickstart our morning, Jo and Tom offered some hand-jiving, fist pumping, warm-up moves. One lady groaned, “It’s too early for this on a Sunday”, but still had a big smile across her face.

Because movement, especially when done in community, makes us feel alive. It lights up a part of us that is dormant when we are plugging away at our jobs or staring at our computers or phones.

This week, my MA in Leadership thesis was published. While school may be done (yay!), the leadership lessons continue to shine around me.

RunClub is packed with leaders who mobilize others to realize healthy, vibrant lives, rich with opportunities for caring, contribution and community.

As we boldly enter these 8 Days of Boogie, embrace it all. The movement, the random acts of kindness and the self-love — you’re worth it.

Kayla Derkach
Kayla Derkach

Promotions/on-air at Jim Pattison Broadcast Group

The 8 Days of Boogie has officially kicked off and I’m excited to be a part of it.

The path to this virtual event has been quite a journey, led by the folks from the RunClub spring clinic.

I feel like that guy in that movie who was been training to the Eye of the Tiger. I think his name was Rocky.

From what I remember of that movie’s montage where Rocky is training, it ends with him standing at the top of some steps. He’s overlooking the city and he’s proud of himself.

I feel like I can relate to that, except my “movie montage” experience has been with RunClub and my “standing at the top of some steps” moment is completing my 5K Boogie run. 

As we’re nearing the end of the spring clinic of RunClub, I like to keep the Boogie philosophy in mind: great community spirit, healthy living (both physical and mental health), fun, passion and a party on the run. There is also love of Kamloops and the “movement” lifestyle.

I’ve been asked if I’ll continue with RunClub after this and I can confidently say I will.

I’ve found a love for running and a passion for RunClub.

Boogie Week 7 training
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