Central is Mad, Madder and Maddest of High School Spirit

A Central quad drum player rallying up the crowd as he is surrounded by the rest of his drummers during their performance at High School Madness on Monday.
Daniel Castaneda, Central quad drum player, rallying up the crowd as he is surrounded by the rest of his drummers during their performance at High School Madness on Monday.

IMPERIAL — Controlled chaos happened as students filled the stands at the Grandstand Event Center at the Imperial Valley Expo on Monday. Schools from across the valley participated in hopes that their spirit and skill would put them in first place for the annual High School Madness competition at the Mid-Winter Fair & Fiesta.

While the event started at 6 p.m., the crowds grew so massive that by 5:30 p.m. any available seat was in high demand by students hoping to see their school victorious. Security for the event was extremely protective of students trying to get in once the stadium was filled. Any student who arrived late to the event joined the large crowd formed outside the entrances, hoping to get a glimpse of the action.

It wasn’t necessary to be in the stands to feel the energy. Whether it was the sound of students cheering, the music be being blasted from the speakers, or the school drumlines beating on their drums, the vibration of sounds could be felt throughout the fairgrounds.

The Junior Fair Board’s highly organized  games and performances were held in a smooth and timely manner. Starting off the event, five student representatives per school participate in mini-games in the spirit of this year’s Fair theme, Hay Bales and Cow Tales. Students participated on bouncy balls in a relay race while lassoing a prop cow for the win.

Tug of war contests held between schools occurred on the side stage pitting spirit and strength against each other.  A classic rivalry sparked the crowd as Brawley vs. Central competed for top honors, ultimately with Central winning the competition in the end. Once completed, the school mascot dance-off commenced. A 30-second time limit showed who had the best dance moves. Holtville’s Viking mascot once again was a crowd favorite as it displayed impressive dance moves.

A teacher and student from each school competed in a cow “moo”-ing competition. Teachers made their loudest cow mooing impression while their school cheered them on.

Once finished, the main event began which consisted of performances from each of the school’s drumline and cheer team. Although this was a big factor in the competition, judges were looking for an overall performance based on spirit and skill from each school to see who would take first place as well as bragging rights on campus the next day.

The Central Spartans came out on top this year, placing first in the event with most notably their drumline performance and crowd interaction. Routine chants such as “Ain’t no party like a Central party” from the crowd and drumline solidified their dominance of the event. Placing second was the Brawley Wildcats, who had a creative cheer routine intro and placing third was the Calexico Bulldogs, who had a remarkable crowd attendance.

Once the winners were announced, students were released into the fairgrounds to enjoy the rest of their night while representing their school.

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