Augusta-area residents have plenty of events to choose from this weekend.
•America’s next generation of scientists and engineers will put their knowledge to the test during the U.S. Department of Energy’s Savannah River Regional Science Bowl® Competition, which has attracted 22 teams from across South Carolina and the greater Augusta area.
During the event, teams face off in a fast-paced question-and-answer format similar to the television show “Jeopardy!” – being tested on a range of science disciplines including biology, chemistry, Earth science, physics, energy and math. Local schools participating are: Aiken High School; John S. Davidson Magnet Fine Arts; Curtis Baptist; Evans Christ Academy; Evans High School; Greenbrier High School; Grovetown High School; Lakeside High School; Midland Valley High School; Richmond County Technical Magnet School; and Westminster Schools of Augusta. The competition is 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at the University of South Carolina Aiken — Business and Education Building.
• The 23rd annual Battle of Aiken. Re-enactors from seven states will re-create the 1865 skirmish that saved Aiken and Augusta from Sherman’s cavalry. Battles are held at 11:30 and 2:30 today and 2:30 on Sunday. All-day exhibits feature 1865 cooking, candle-making, spinning, ladies tea, Edgefield pottery, wood-carving, Civil War medicine and soldier camp tours.Gates open at 9 a.m. each day, rain or shine, at Interstate 20 and S.C. 19 (exit 18), Aiken. Tickets are available at the gate. Visit www.battleofaiken.org for more information.
•Aiken Rally for the Affordable Care Act. Local leaders are expected to speak. The event is noon-2 p.m. at the Fountain at Newberry Street, between Richland and Park avenues.
• The annual Igniting the Dream of Medicine Conference, sponsored by the Medical College of Georgia Office of Student and Multicultural Affairs and its chapter of the Student National Medical Association.The daylong program, which is focused on groups that are underrepresented in health care education, offers an overview of the medical school admission process, opportunities to network and hands-on experience in a state-of-the-art simulation center, physical exam instruction, a suture clinic and more. More than 300 high school and college students are expected to attend; 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the J. Harold Harrison, M.D. Education Commons.
• Lakeside High School and Augusta University present the sixth annual Georgia Vocal Invitational. This event is one of the only show choir competitions in Georgia. Nine choirs from several Southeastern states will perform at Lakeside, including the school’s Soundsation Show. Doors open at 10 a.m., with tickets sold there.
• The ninth Augusta University Half Marathon, 10K & 5K. Nearly 1,500 runners are expected to compete in the event presented by the Augusta Sports Council. The race begins on Milledge Road at 7:30 a.m. in front of Lake Olmstead Stadium. The route will travel down Broad Street through downtown Augusta, up Walton Way to “The Hill” area, down Berckmans Road to Washington Road and continue around Lake Olmstead to the finish line inside Lake Olmstead Park.
•Fort Gordon Youth ChalleNGe Academy Graduation Ceremony; 11 a.m. at the Bell Auditorium, 712 Telfair St.; The National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program is a voluntary intervention program open to 16- to 18-year-old high school dropouts looking to change their lives through education, community service, physical fitness and life skills training. The 17-month program helps young people earn their GED, enroll in college, enter the workforce or join the military. The Fort Gordon Youth Challenge Academy will graduate nearly 200 Georgia cadets. Guest speaker is Command Sgt. Maj. Carlos M. Simmons of the U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence, Fort Gordon.