ALBERTVILLE, AL (WAFF)- The tornadoes caused major damage in Albertville, but it wasn't enough to stop firefighters from across the nation from coming to town for a little friendly competition.
The Fire Fighters Combat Challenge began nearly twenty years ago in Washington D.C. with just a handful of teams.
The challenge event grew, and over the years, has taken place at several different locations. This weekend will be the first time it's came to Alabama, and Albertville was chosen to host the event.
April's tornadoes nearly kept it from happening, but Albertville fire fighters are now back on the course training for the Fire Fighters Combat Challenge.
"They had been training until the tornado hit us. Last week they didn't get to train any, but they started back last night [Wednesday]," said Albertville Fire Chief Robert Terrell.
"We didn't even want to think about rescheduling or postponing it," said Albertville Mayor Lindsey Lyons.
The national event brings fire fighters from all over the country for this one day event.
"We have a lot of departments coming in--looks like from Arkansas, Mississippi, Georgia, and different areas-- to compete in this," said Chief Terrell.
After nearly two weeks of dealing with tornado damage, Mayor Lyons said this is something that can help change the mood of residents.
"This community has been suffering for more than ten days now, and this is something positive that we can all take part of," said Mayor Lyons.
Chief Terrell feels it's something that can put a smile on not only the community's face, but firefighters as well.
The Firefighters Combat Challenge is free to the public. It will be held at the Albertville Rec Center on West McKinney Avenue, Saturday from 10 AM to 5 PM.