Teen who raises most money to be marshal of walk

GAINESVILLE - The participant under the age of 18 who registers and raises the largest amount in donations for Georgia's upcoming Walk From Obesity in Gainesville will lead the walk and ride in the Grand Marshal's convertible with Cat Whitehill, 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist in Women's Soccer.

The benefit walk, which is scheduled for Sept. 16, is part of a national effort to increase awareness of the life-threatening disease of obesity and to raise funds for research, prevention and advanced treatments. Studies show morbid obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death and is at epidemic levels among the U.S. population. Participants in Georgia's Walk from Obesity will join thousands of other walkers around the country participating in local events to bring attention and additional research funding to the disease.

Registration is $25 and online preregistration at www.walkfromobesity.com is encouraged so participants can get a commemorative T-shirt. Sign-in begins at 8 a.m. at the traffic court parking lot on Washington Street. Warm-up is set for 8:30 a.m. with the walk through the Brenau University campus and surrounding neighborhood scheduled to begin at 9 a.m.

Anyone interested in meeting Whitehill and participating in the walk as a volunteer, sponsor or participant should call 770-534-0110 or visit the national event Web site at www.walkfromobesity.com.

Local musicians perform in festival

NORCROSS - Violist Erin Kirby of Norcross and violinist Ji Hye Chung of Suwanee have been selected as two of 21 high school musicians who will participate in the Robert McDuffie & Friends Labor Day Festival for Strings at Mercer University in Macon this weekend.

The five-day festival and musical learning extravaganza will give the students an opportunity to study with world-renowned violinist and Distinguished University Professor of Music Robert McDuffie and some of the nation's foremost concert artists. The Festival is a preview of the academic offerings of the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University.

Of the 21 students selected, eight are from Georgia. Kirby is a senior at Norcross High School. She has been playing viola for six years and has performed in the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra, the Buckhead Youth Orchestra and the All-State Orchestra. She is instructed by Marilyn Seelman.

Chung is a junior at North Gwinnett High School. She has been playing violin for 10 years and has served as concertmaster for the Gwinnett County Youth Symphony for two years. She has also been a member of the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra for three years, serving as assistant principal second violin. She is instructed by Sonja Foster.

Man wins charity auction at AMS

SUGAR HILL - Randy Woody was the high bidder in the online Ticketmaster Bass Pro Shops 500 Winners Experience auction.

The Sugar Hill resident's winning bid for the package was $1,900 and net proceeds from the auction will be donated to Speedway Children's Charities.

Woody and a guest will receive two chairback seats in the new Winners Grandstand for all three days of door-to-door racing action, two pre-race pit passes, reserved parking, a pre-race pace car ride around the high-banked Atlanta Motor Speedway and a visit to Victory Lane to join the celebration following the Bass Pro Shops 500.

Fans have another opportunity to bid on a Winners Experience, comprised of the same elements, or can purchase tickets to the Bass Pro Shops 500 race weekend by calling 770-946-4211, 877-9-AMS-TIX or by visiting www.atlantamotorspeedway.com.

Gwinnett Gab appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.