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The Center to kick off AIDS Walk 2013 with Street Food & Street Challenge on Thursday

SAN DIEGO -- The San Diego LGBT Community Center will host a Street Food & Street Challenge party this Thursday, Aug. 15 to kick off this year's AIDS Walk & Run San Diego.

The event will include food trucks, craft beer, music by DJ John Joseph, and a chance to preview some of the obstacle challenges on a 100-foot-long and 29-foot-high course that will be a part of the new Street Challenge, which debuts at this year's walk.

The Street Challenge has been added to this year's AIDS Walk & Run to give participants another fun way to raise money for HIV/AIDS service providers in San Diego. While the traditional walk and run will go on as it has for many years, the Street Challenge creates a third option for participants.

The Street Challenge will be a 5K obstacle course through Marston Point in Balboa Park that will have three heats, beginning at 9, 9:30 and 10 am on Sunday, Sept. 29. The Challenge will feature obstacles especially created to test each participant’s strength, endurance, agility and quick thinking.

To add to the fun, people competing in the Street Challenge obstacle course are encouraged to participate wearing the costume of their choice. Every participant will be evaluated by the Obstacle Course judges, and one individual and one team will be selected to take home the “Best Dressed” trophy.

Brandon Tate, director of development at The Center, encourages all community members to come out to this Thursday's event and stressed the importance of supporting AIDS Walk.

"Did you know that The Center is home to one of many testing sites around San Diego County? Anonymous HIV Testing with professional medical staff is offered at The Center — call us if you want to schedule an appointment. By supporting our HIV Services you can help provide counseling and support services to those living with or affected by HIV/AIDS who turn to The Center for support," Tate said.

AIDS Walk, Run & Street Challenge is San Diego County’s largest one-day HIV/AIDS fundraiser, and last year helped deliver nearly $400,000 in grants to 10 local agencies.

In addition to providing much-needed funding for local HIV/AIDS service organizations that serve the approximately 12,500 people living with HIV in San Diego County, AIDS Walk helps raise awareness about the impact of HIV and AIDS.

Thursday's event will take place in The Center's parking lot, located at 3909 Centre St., from 5-8 pm. Craft beers from Hillcrest Brewing Company will available, and popular food trucks such as Not-so-fast, Chop Soo-Ey, Miss Patty Melt, Mad Mantis, Red Oven Pizza and others will be on site.

For more information or to register for AIDS Walk, Run, & Street Challenge San Diego 2013, click HERE.