Old River School Elementary Team Takes First Place for the Seventh Time in Carnival History

The Old River School Gator team celebrates their victory at the 58th Dale Lostetter Carnival of Champions, held at Warren High School

On Saturday, March 23, 2024, after months of try-outs and practice, hundreds of fourth and fifth grade students competed in the district-wide track meet known as the Dale Lostetter Carnival of Champions. Held at Warren High School, this event marked the 58th year Downey Unified hosted this track and field exhibition, since 1962.

Bringing home the coveted trophy for the seventh time in Carnival history, was the Old River School Elementary Gators team. Following in second and third place were the Lewis Elementary All Stars and Price Elementary Panthers, respectively.

Despite the rain, hundreds of families and student supporters filled the stands at Justice Stadium and cheered their athletes on the field while DJ Schiavo played upbeat music throughout the entire competition. To boost school pride and excitement, two new events featuring all elementary school mascots were added. In the end, the Old River School Gator won first place in a humorous Mascot Race while the Gallatin Elementary Grizzly danced its way to Mascot Dance-Off glory. Returning to the Carnival of Champions since becoming a Global Languages Academy of Downey school, the Carpenter Elementary athletes proudly competed in all fourth-grade events this first year back.

“I could not be prouder of our students, staff and families for their preparation for this year’s competition,” expressed Board of Education President, Nancy Swenson. “Even through the bouts of rain, our students especially demonstrated their commitment to sportsmanship. Students gave each other pep talks at the starting line and congratulated and consoled each other at the finish line. It’s clear our coaches and families helped to instill the pillars of CHARACTER COUNTS in each of our athletes. I also want to extend a huge thanks to our school mascots for the entertaining dance-off and mascot race this year. What a great new addition to this wonderful and fun-filled event!”

The Dale Lostetter Carnival of Champions is an annual event that brings together approximately 400 students from 11 of the 13 elementary schools in our district, to compete in the seven track and field events: baskets in a minute, softball throw for distance, standing long jump, 50-meter dash, 100-meter dash, four-member team 400-meter relay and mixed-coed relay.

For those interested in seeing photos from the event, please see our online album.