Iveyjoy Hadden, top, is lifted up by University of Georgia cheerleaders for a photo at this year's Border Bash at SRP Park.

A crowd of fans dressed in garnet and red cheered for their favorite team Friday night at the annual Border Bash at SRP Park. 

For 26 years the annual event has welcomed football fans of the University of South Carolina Gamecocks and the University of Georgia Bulldogs to join together for a pep rally the Friday before the two teams face off. 

From 5 to 9 p.m., fans of all ages played games, listened to live music by the Embers and the Swingin' Medallions and waited in long lines to take pictures with cheerleaders and team mascots from both schools.

Border Bash producer Joe Stevenson said he has been involved with the event for the past 10 years and was excited to bring the Gamecock and Bulldog rivalry celebration to SRP Park for the first time. 

The event not only serves as a pep rally but as a means of funding charity work through The Border Bash Foundation.

Over the 26 year span of the event, The Border Bash Foundation has contributed over $900,000 to causes across the area.

"We've been really fortunate to be doing this for the past 26 years," Stevenson said. "Both schools have been really supportive of this event."

Stevenson said each year the event brings out "the good old fashioned rivalries" between fans. 

Dan Booth, a South Carolina fan, said going to the Border Bash is a yearly family tradition and he is sure the Gamecocks will win Saturday. 

"Carolina 35. Georgia 17. That's my prediction," Booth said. "It's just two good rivalriy teams side by side. Let's see who wins. I know it'll be South Carolina." 


Dan Booth and his family Tinsley, Kiki and Noelle meet members of the University of South Carolina cheerleading team.

Georgia fan Stuart Prettel thought otherwise.

Prettel said each year he and his dog Astro, who was dressed in a Georgia shirt and visor, come to the Border Bash every year to "celebrate South Carolina losing."  

"We're in Georgia-lina," Prettel said. "Georgia is so good at football and the Gamecocks have had a tradition here for years and I think that's the rivalry here. Here it's Georgia and the Gamecocks." 

The Gamecocks will taken on the Bulldogs Saturday at Sanford Stadium. Kick off is scheduled for noon.

Matthew Enfinger is a general assignment reporter with the Aiken Standard. Follow him on Twitter: @matt_enfinger