Barkema Family
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Barkema Family

Written By: Christina Miller

The 4 Barkeys

Everything you are about to read is biased, since I love the Barkemas. This family is a ray of sunshine sharing their love of Ogden and community everywhere they go. The 4 Barkeys as they lovingly refer to themselves are Kelli – mom, Ken – Dad, Bridget – 15, and Lola – 12. (PS. Follow #4Barkeys on Instagram to see what fun they are up to.) All 4 of them are actively involved with the GOAL Foundation.

Volunteering for the GOAL Foundation and the Ogden Marathon allow the Barkemas to be able to volunteer together as a family and still contribute using their different strengths. Kelli is the newest Goal Foundation board member and can be seen cheering runners along the route will doing whatever task needs to get done. Ken teaches kids to run through GOAL’s Young Runners Program. Bridget works on the Green Team with her friends during the marathon, and finally, Lola runs, runs, and runs!

Ken ran back in high school but stopped after. However, 10 years ago Bridget was running in a fun run at her school, and Lola did not want to be left out. Lola ran the whole race with her dad, and they’ve been running together ever since. Lola was featured as the face of the Marathon 6 years ago when she and Bridget participated in the Young Runners program at their school’s YMCA and received free entries for the 5K, and the Barkemas have been supporting the GOAL Foundation ever since.

During this year’s Ogden Marathon, Ken and Lola are running the relay marathon. Lola will be bringing her team home through the finish line. Both Ken and Lola say running is about beating your own time, but it was totally obvious that Lola was excited that she can now run faster than her dad. He was pretty dang proud too. Lola recommends to other kids who’d like to start running like her, to get their parents involved and running too. It’s a fun chance to show off with your family.

If you don’t see the 4 Barkeys at the Ogden Marathon, you can also find them at the Winter Race Circuit, Mountain to Metro, and any other activity the GOAL Foundation runs. They are ready to help and support GOAL at a moment’s notice. You can also find them out supporting many of the Ogden events – First Friday Art Stroll, Farmers Market, Harvest Moon Festival and more. They love Ogden and show it by getting out and living!

I know I search out the Barkemas when I’m out and about in Ogden. They are always there with bright smiles and encouraging words. And they back up their support of Ogden with their willingness to get out and do the work that makes Ogden great. So, don’t forget to be on the lookout for the 4 Barkeys during the Ogden Marathon’s 20th Anniversary. They’ll be there making sure you have a great race.

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