Thousands of Kids Race in Barnebirkie on Day One of Birkie Weekend

"Birkie fever! I am a true believer!"

HAYWARD, Wis. – Barnebirkie is the one event that makes Birkie dreams happen for thousands of kids from around the region.

“The Birkie gets in your blood in different ways. I’ve been coming here since I was eight or nine,” said Cordell Manz.

For more than 30 years, big smiles have been seen on the bright faces of many young children skiing down main street.

And spectators cheering for glory.

For many families this was a first time experience.

“They had a lot of fun. It was a little cold, that will take a little getting used to, but yes it is a new family tradition for us,” said Amanda Heinzel.

One parent, gearing up for his 24th trek down the Birkie trail this Saturday, took a moment to share the festivities with his daughter as they continue their tradition.

“It’s kind of an obligation almost and it is kind of an addiction. You just gotta keep coming back and doing the Birkie,” said Manz.

Barnebirkie is the stepping stone for kids trying to find new interest in a winter activity or even build momentum for their chance to take part in the Birkie when they get older.

Along with all the excitement the kids also learn a valuable lesson.

“You know that when you decide and put your mind to something that you just need to stick to it and finish it. I know that there were times that they were a little discouraged,” said Heinzel

In agreement with her mother a young Barnebirkie competitor reminds other kids her age to keep going.

“I was really scared at first,” said Reagan Heinzel

Heinzel continues, “The lesson I learned is if you keep trying you won’t give up.

Through the lessons fun was the main goal for many of the parents and the kids.

“Birkie fever! I am a true believer,” Manz sings.

There are plenty of other events happening this weekend.

Birkie ends this Sunday.

For a full list of Birkie events click here.



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