The United States Police and Fire Championships is an Olympic-style competition that originated in San Diego and dates back to 1967. The event was created to promote physical fitness within the law enforcement community.
"We have 50 events and generally 35 to 40 venues throughout the greater San Diego area", says event director Jim King. "We are expecting 2,800 to 3,000 athletes."
It's a chance for law enforcement and firefighters to compete individually, one-on-one, or team versus team. Many of the participants are very skilled athletes, so you might expect the competitions to be very competitive.
"You can pretty much pick a sport. We have some really good athletes and we have some great teams that show up. We in law enforcement, as well as firefighters, get paid a salary and we get paid to serve. So all of our people are training on their off time, or during their work breaks."
Peter Myers is with the San Diego Sheriff's Department and has played hockey since he was 4 years old. He plays goalie for the San Diego Law Enforcement Spartans.
"Southern California and especially this event, bring high-level competition and high skill level in ice hockey. Southern California is turning into quite the hotbed for ice hockey."
The Police and Fire Championships are about having fun and feature good rivalries in all the sports. While everyone competing wants to win, it's also about building friendships.
"It's kind of like a family reunion," says King. "There is that familial aspect that really makes it fun. It's about the camaraderie, the sportsmanship is outstanding, and we all try and represent our services to the best of our ability."
Just like in the Olympics, gold, silver, and bronze medals are given out to those finishing first, second, and third in their events.