Connecting Community Youth with Running
Nicole Harrington

We are so proud to partner with the Boys & Girls Club of Marin & Petaluma who is the charity of choice for the 2017 Bank of Marin Running Festival. In 2016 Nicole Harrington, the Boys & Girls Club Program Director for the MLK Clubhouse, participated in the event along with six other club girls who took part in the Run Like A Girl Mile. We sat down with Nicole to ask her about her experience and the partnership with the Bank of Marin Running Festival.

How did Boys & Girls Club first become connected with the Bank of Marin Running Festival?

Our former Development Director’s father is the President and CEO of the Bank of Marin which is how we were made aware of the event in 2016. We had a group of staff members from multiple clubs who ran various distances. In addition, myself and six other girls from the club participated in the Run Like A Girl Mile and had a ton of fun! We are huge advocated for promoting healthy lifestyles so it just made sense for us to be an officially partner for this year as the message the event stands on is an extension of our own values.  

What did the girls think of the Run Like A Girl Mile as well as their overall impression of the event?

They really enjoyed it! The girls were extremely excited going into it and they enjoyed not only running, but just being a part of the race day festivities. For most of them, it was the first time they had ever been a part of an organized running event. Following the event, they were so excited the about running that they wanted to start a running club which is currently in the development stages. They have also been asking about doing the event again this year. 

What was the best race day moment for you?

For me, it was great to see the level of enjoyment and engagement the girls experienced with each other on race day. Some of girls ran different paces but they were all checking in with each other and made sure they having a good time. It was also awesome that they got to communicate and engage with other youth around their age from different parts of Marin County. 

What makes Marin County such a special community?

Marin is a very tight knit community focused on health and wellbeing and our organizational values very much align with this mindset. I think this comes from being in a place that is so rich in access to wide open outdoor spaces to explore. We try and partner with organizations, such as the Bank of Marin Running Festival, that involve the community with opportunities to enjoy our natural resources. These partnerships then allow our kids to have access and learn these healthy habits that they otherwise wouldn’t have.