Jedis, Ready, Set, Go! Follow COURSE OF THE FORCE with Ashley Eckstein and Chris Hardwick

This July will mark the inaugural Course of the Force lightsaber relay race hosted in sunny California. The five-day relay race will begin in Santa Monica and end in San Diego at San Diego Comic-Con. Lucasfilm, Ltd. has partnered up with Chris Hardwick’s Nerdist Industries for this event and proceeds will go to Make-A-Wish.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars star Ashley Eckstein will be co-hosting this race with Chris Hardwick and his Nerdist Channel’s Alison Haislip. Eckstein will even be running a quarter-mile leg of this race! Check out the full press release on the race and Eckstein’s involvement below:

Ashley Eckstein to Co-Host Course of the Force Lightsaber Relay

SANTA MONICA, CA – Star Wars™ fans everywhere have yet another reason to be excited about the inaugural Course of the Force lightsaber relay. Ashley Eckstein, voice of the character Ahsoka Tano in the hit television series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, will team with Nerdist Industries’ founder Chris Hardwick and the Nerdist Channel’s Alison Haislip to lead legions of Star Wars fans from Santa Monica to San Diego and into San Diego Comic-Con International ®. The Course of the Force is a five-day relay, July 7-11, for Star Wars enthusiasts to celebrate their love of the Saga. The event is held in partnership with Lucasfilm, Ltd., Nerdist Industries and Octagon to raise proceeds for Make-A-Wish®.

“I am so excited to be a part of such an amazing event,” said Eckstein.  “When Course of the Force was first announced I knew immediately that I wanted to be a part of it. I am honored to be working with Chris, Alison and Nerdist Industries, and I ask my fellow Star Wars fans to join me for this worthy cause.”

Eckstein currently stars as the voice of Ahsoka Tano in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. She is also the founder of Her Universe™ which is the first merchandise line exclusively for female sci-fi fans. Her Universe products include Star Wars and Syfy licensed apparel and accessories.

“Ashley is a glorious addition to the Course of the Force. She is not just an important character on Star Wars: The Clone Wars, she is also a true follower of the Saga. I am but a mere Padawan in comparison to her Jedi mastery,” states Nerdist Industries founder and Course of the Force host Chris Hardwick.

Giving the event a true fan’s touch, Eckstein, Hardwick and Haislip will follow the action from the Course of the Force lead vehicle each day, broadcasting live to fans across the world on  and the Nerdist YouTube channel ( They will be joined by special guests from the Saga and pop-culture to put on an epic celebration for both the fans in attendance and watching online.

In addition, Eckstein and Hardwick will run quarter-mile legs of the relay. They will be joined by celebrity guests, Make-A-Wish kids and over 300 fans who register online at One hundred percent of runner proceeds benefit the Make-A-Wish chapters of San Diego, Greater Los Angeles, and Orange County and the Inland Empire.

At quarter-mile markers, participants will hand off the official Course of the Force lightsaber to the next runner as they begin their leg of the journey. On July 7, Course of the Force will kick off with an event at the Santa Monica Pier at 10:00 a.m. The relay will start later in the day and end that night at the Redondo Beach Pier. Other planned stops include Huntington Beach Pier, Oceanside and Crystal Pier at Pacific Beach. Instead of running, Monday, July 9 will feature special sponsor promotions, to be announced at a later date. The final day of the inaugural Course of the Force will conclude in San Diego at the Balboa Theatre, with entertainment to cap off the epic journey.


Day                      Start Time        Start Location       End Time     End Location

Saturday, July 7     1pm              Santa Monica Pier      7pm              Redondo Beach Pier

Sunday, July 8         7am             Redondo Beach Pier  4:30pm       Huntington Beach Pier

Tuesday, July 10    7am              Oceanside Pier          5:30pm      Crystal Pier, Pacific Beach

Wed., July 11            7am             Crystal Pier, Pacific Beach 12:30pm    San Diego

 *All times approximate and subject to change. The concluding event at the Balboa Theatre is a ticketed event. All other events mentioned in schedule are free to the public.


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@Heruniverse joins @nerdist & @alisonhaislip to co-host @CourseotheForce lightsaber relay July 7-11 before @Comic_Con


Ashley Eckstein launched Her Universe in 2009 to directly address the expanding market of female fans by entering into its first agreement with Lucas Licensing to develop and produce a line of female-centered Star Wars apparel and accessories. The success of that line was followed up with a collection for the Syfy network. You can learn more about Her Universe by going to its website at and by following Eckstein on Twitter at and visiting the Her Universe Facebook page at

Lucasfilm, the Lucasfilm logo, STAR WARS™ and related properties are trademarks and/or copyrights, in the United States and other countries, of Lucasfilm Ltd. and/or its affiliates. TM & © Lucasfilm Ltd.  All rights reserved.  All other trademarks and trade names are properties of their respective owners.

Lillian 'zenbitch' Standefer
Written by Lillian 'zenbitch' Standefer

is Senior Managing Editor for SciFi, skips along between the lines of sci-fi, fantasy, and reality, and is living proof that geek girls really DO exist!