TAMPA — Apprentice ironworkers from nine local unions across the Southeast will complete a two-day competition Thursday morning.
The competitors finished some of their less flashy tasks — such as setting up an instrument and taking a 100-question written test — on Wednesday.
Thursday's activities, which are open to the public, are more hands-on and spectator-friendly. Events include a rod tying competition and 35-foot column climb.
"The column climb is pretty cool," said Keven Barber, who is recording secretary of the Ironworkers Local 397 in Hillsborough County. "All you have is your body."
Competitors earn points in each of the eight competitions based on the quality and speed of their work. The winner will go on to represent the Southeast at a larger competition in Toronto in September.
The competition runs Thursday from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., with the column climb beginning about 11 a.m. The event is at Local 397, 10201 E U.S. 92, east of Tampa.