COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Amateur boxers throughout the U.S. and Caribbean are making their way to the Chattahoochee Valley.
The Sugar Bert National Boxing Championship will be calling Columbus home for the first time.
The four-day event is expected to bring more than 600 boxers and boosting the local economy by $400,000.
Amateur boxers from the ages eight to 75 will be competing all weekend. The event approved and supported by U.S. Boxing features Olympic style boxing, special training, and bragging rights.
Head coach, Bert "Sugar Bert" Wells says this competition is to help Olympic dreams come true.
"We went to three cities before we came here. We were in Elizabeth, New Jersey, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and then Augusta, Georgia. We had over 600 boxers eligible to come into this national tournament. It gives them the opportunity to get competition to make it to junior and summer Olympics," said Wells.
This is the second annual year of the competition.
Celebrity boxers, current champs, former world champions and Olympic gold medalists are expected to make appearances throughout the championship.
Local champ, Money Powell IV says this is a great opportunity for those wanting to become professional athletes.
"I fought in Suger Bert's tournament when I was, the first time when I was 13, and I lost. This tournament means so much to me, it is the first time I ever won a belt," said Money Powell IV.
Twenty-year-old Powell, a native of Russell County, has competed in matches all across the country and in Europe. He's also the 2016 U.S. Boxing Nationals champion.
Suger Bert says through this competition, he hopes to train-up the next boxing greats.
Sunday, November 19th is the main day for events and titles will be dispersed.