One of Covington's biggest annual events is here once again.
The 29th annual Fuzz Run kicks off Saturday, following an expo all day Friday, as close to 2,000 participants will both run and walk either a mile or five kilometers ending in the Covington square.
Conyers Street will be closed Friday as an expo will be held at the Conyers Street Gym from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Participants can pick up their numbers and T-shirts, while visiting several vendors ranging from health care providers to Grafiti Headbands from South Carolina. Non-race runners can also visit the expo to peruse the booths or sign up for the event.
The expo has been going on for seven years, and boasted 25 exhibitors in 2011. This year, there will be 40 exhibitors at the event modeled after the one held before the Peachtree Road Race.
"We encourage everybody come Friday to see the expo and pick up their race numbers," said Officer Chip Shirah, Fuzz Run Director.
Following Friday's expo, the streets along the race's routes, which can be found at
covingtonpolice.com/client_resources/fuzz%20run%20route.pdf will be blocked off just before the 8 a.m. start time on Saturday and will reopen after the competitors have cleared off.
The race begins with registration Saturday, followed by American Idol season four runner-up Bo Bice singing the national anthem. Bice, who finished second to Carrie Underwood in 2005, was having coffee at Square Perk, while a Conyers Police Officer was discussing the Fuzz Run. Bice then volunteered his services at the yearly event.
Following the 8:20 a.m. singing of the national anthem, the run will kick off with the mile event, followed by the 5K.
During the race, water, which was provided by Walmart and Kroger, will be available at the one-mile and two-mile points will be available. Following the race, water will also be available along with an award presentation.
Awards will be given out to the top overall runners, such as record holders Felix Kibdiywo in 14:16 (2010) and Janet Cherobon 16:40 (2010), a long with the top finishers in their age groups.
New this year is the Top of the Hill award, which will be given out to the top 50-year old finisher.
Door prizes will also be given out, including a 60-inch TV provided by Walmart.
The race is being sponsored by several area businesses, and provides 99 percent of its charitable funds to local charities.
Last year, the race brought in around $33,000, with most of it going locally.
The race began in 1984 by officer Frank Hilton as a way to give to officers hurt in the line of duty.
"Every year, we give away several thousands for whatever it might be that you see such officers killed in the line of duty," Shirah said.
For more information on the event, which still has registration open at the Conyers Police Department, at the expo or race day, visit covingtonpolice.com/fuzz-run.aspx.