A costumed participant in the 2012 Course of the Force relay. (Lucasfilm)Link
A replica of Jabba the Hutt's sail barge in the 2012 Course of the Force relay. (Lucasfilm)Link
“Glee” star Chris Colfer and model Adrianne Curry will be among a dozen celebrities donning “Star Wars” costumes and joining the legion of runners in this year’s Course of the Force, a lightsaber relay leading up to Comic-Con International in San Diego.
Thousands are expected to participate in the Course of the Force, an Olympic-style relay launched last year by Lucasfilm and Nerdist Industries to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation. This year’s relay kicks off July 9 at Skywalker Ranch, north of San Francisco, and follows the coast some 500 miles down to San Diego. (Last year’s 136-mile run began in Santa Monica.)
The relay ends in San Diego on July 16, in time for Comic-Con International, which runs July 17-21 at the city’s waterfront convention center, drawing more than 130,000 professionals and enthusiasts in the realms of sci-fi, fantasy, video games, comics and horror for the annual pop-culture expo.
In addition to Colfer and Curry, Alexis Denisof (“Angel,” “How I Met Your Mother”), Jordana Brewster (“Fast & Furious”), Wilmer Valderrama (“That ‘70s Show”), Jaime King (“Hart of Dixie,” “Sin City 2″), her husband Kyle Newman (“Fanboys”), Analeigh Tipton (“Crazy, Stupid, Love”), Molly Quinn (“Castle”), Aimee Teegarden (“Friday Night Lights”), Ty Simpkins (“Iron Man 3″), Danielle Panabaker (“Necessary Roughness”) and Kevin Shinick (“Robot Chicken”) are each slated to run a quarter-mile segment of the relay, wearing a “Star Wars”-themed costume and passing off the event’s official lightsaber.
Many of last year’s event highlights — including R2-D2 and a replica of Jabba the Hutt’s sail barge — will be returning. Along the way, runners can stop at open-to-the-public “conivals” (Get it? As in, Comic-Con) featuring food and drink, live entertainment, expo booths and giveaways at stops in San Francisco, Santa Monica, Huntington Beach and Oceanside. During Comic-Con, Course of the Force will host activities at the Chuck Jones Gallery in San Diego’s Gaslamp District.
Registration for a spot in Course for the Force — which includes a quarter-mile segment in the relay, a customized lightsaber and a swag bag — costs $150. The conivals are open to the public. Click through the gallery above for a look at last year’s event.
– Noelene Clark | @NoeleneClark
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