Virginia Highlands United Way fundraising campaign underway

POSTED: 4:20 PM Jun 07 2013   UPDATED: 5:49 PM Jun 07 2013
ABINGDON, Va. -

It's a strange but fun way to kick off this year's fundraising campaign for United Way Virginia Highlands -- a beauty contest, but not like what you might think. It was men dressed as contestants.

Eight contestants who were representing the many localities that makes up the five county Virginia Highlands United Way participated. An enthusiastic crowd cheered them on.

This is the first year that the regional United Way will raised fund for all five counties. "It's enabled us to do more. It's grown our capacity. There's things that when we were smaller and independent the way we were we could accomplish certain things. It's enabled us to build the team that we need but also allowed us to do more service in economies of scale," Travis Staton with Virginia Highlands United Way said.

Although not set in stone, this year's fund raising goal is close to $1.5 million.