Hundreds participate in Great Inflatable Race to benefit Lighthouse for Life

Allen Wallace photos

Columbia hosts many races for runners and walkers, and Saturday’s may not have been the longest or most difficult. It was, however, unquestionably the bounciest.

More than 1,000 people spent the morning navigating obstacles at Saluda Shoals Park in the Great Inflatable Race. Children and adults, serious runners and those there just for the fun of it all took part, hitting the course in several waves to dash or walk between the inflatables and then bounce and climb over and through them.

“It’s so much harder than we expected,” said Jessica Lynch as she and the three friends who raced alongside her caught their breath at the finish line. “It was so much fun, though, and the only good thing about the heat was it made us motivated to get over the inflatables faster.”

The Great Inflatable Race hosts events all over the country, partnering with local nonprofits at each stop. A portion of the proceeds from Saturday’s race will go to Lighthouse for Life.

Lighthouse for Life, founded by Andrea Wind in 2014, is a nonprofit dedicated to raising awareness of human trafficking, offering educational resources in an effort to help people recognize warning signs and put a stop to the crimes.

Lighthouse for Life supplied volunteers to assist with the race, and many participants registered using a code that gave them a discount on the entry fee while increasing the donation from The Great Inflatable Race to the charity.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Columbia, Irmo, Lexington County