All for the thrill of the climb.
This weekend, the UT Outdoor Program, better known as UTOP, will host "Faux Reel Rocks," a festival of activities centering on the world of rock climbing. The festival will begin Friday at 7 p.m. with a film series, and will conclude Saturday with a climbing competition at the Vol Wall.
In addition to climbers from the UT community, the competition will bring participants from Brevard College in North Carolina, UT-Chattanooga and local high schools.
UT's Climbing Club President Corinne Kinzy, a sophomore in chemical engineering, is excited for the upcoming weekend.
"My goals for the whole weekend are to motivate people about climbing and educate them about all the different types of climbing there are," Kinzy said. "Of course, also, to benefit the Outdoors Program."
The Reel Rock 8 film tour will be stopping in at the UC Auditorium Friday evening, and for $10, students and community members can view a series of adventure documentaries meant to inspire attendees to climb.
"The film is a documentary showing climbers who are neither traditional nor very safe, yet incredibly entertaining," Kinzy said.
Xan Pitzer, member of UTOP's Events Committee and a junior in French and world business, encourages climbers at every degree of skill to participate.
"The competition is open to all levels, beginner through advanced," Pitzer said, "and they are really encouraging new climbers to join this year."
This fall event focuses on climbing outdoors and gaining new beginner climbers. A second competition, the Collegiate Climbing Series, is held in the spring.
Kinzy has been climbing for five years and has been a part of the Climbing Club since arriving at UT. She said she hopes to share her love of the sport through UTOP's event.
"The outdoors can be used to help you connect with others on a deeper level since you are outside in the wilderness and all barriers are broken," Kinzy said. "It's really satisfying to watch someone at the beginning who couldn't even get up the wall become someone who has the ability to place in a competition."