‘Madness’ erupts at the fair as thousands of high school students rally

The Calexico high school drum line performs a routine Monday night in the grand stands during high school madness at the California Mid-Winter Fair & Fiesta in Imperial. Photo by Joselito N. Villero.

IMPERIAL — High School Madness hit with full force Monday night as students from every school in the Valley descended upon the California Mid-Winter Fair and Fiesta to show some school spirit hoping to take home the 2017 “Madness” victory.

Thousands of students packed the IV Expo Grandstands for an exciting live show that featured live games and performances from each school’s band and cheerleading squad. Games included sweet toss, sugar cube stack, and a round of tug-of-war between the Valley schools. The night even included a special performance of “Happy Birthday” to Brawley’s own Mrs. Self, whose birthday fell right on the day of the event.

“This year’s High School Madness was my very first experience, and it was one to remember. We might not have won, but we all still had the spirit and had lots of fun competing against other schools,” said Brawley Union High School senior Jessica Avendaño.

In the end, it was Holtville High that enjoyed the taste of victory as they spirited their way to the championship lane, followed by a second place Central and a third place Brawley Union High.

“Overall, the performances were amazing, and drum line did a great job,” said Imperial senior Cecilia L.

Holtville High School Vikings cheerleaders perform a routine Monday night during high school madness in the grandstand at California Mid-Winter Fair & Fiesta in Imperial. Holtville High School took first place in the high school madness competition. Photo by Joselito N. Villero.

Along with all the school festivities, perhaps the highlight of the night included the mascot dance-off and the tug-of-war finals which saw Brawley pull the way to victory, with wins over Central, Southwest, and Calipatria.

In terms of performance, Imperial High cheerleaders woke up the crowd early with their dance choreography, while yet again, the Central band successfully closed the show with another classic performance.