For the 19th consecutive year a unique competition known as the “Great American Worm Race” has wiggled its way into Lucerne Valley with this year's edition again being held at Lucerne Valley Elementary School’s Goulding Hall.
Started by Lucerne Valley Roadrunner Jo Richards, the recent fundraising event on May 3 took several months to plan with local businesses and community members sponsoring worms that are “handled” by LVES 6th graders. The top five handlers survived several competition brackets to make it to the finals. This year, the first place award went to Jadyn Paddack with Luisangel Lupercio taking 2nd place, Marisela Ortega and her worm racing to 3rd place, Natalie Coe taking 4th and Rochelle DuBoise and her worm getting 5th place.
As has been done throughout the years, a team of Lucerne Valley Roadrunners served as event volunteers. The Lucerne Valley Market & Hardware Store kept the wiggling worms well fed and under lock and key leading up to the race. With the Kentucky Derby hit with controversy, the winner of the Great American Worm Race was never in doubt.
Participating Lucerne Valley residents and business owners contributed $10 apiece to sponsor a worm with hundreds of dollars being raised for the annual Tailgate Trick-or-Treat event this coming Halloween.
PHOTOS BY DESTANY CAGLE AND LEAH PADDACK
Top Photo: from left to right: Luisangel Lupercio (2nd place), Rochelle DuBoise (5th place), Jadyn Paddack (1st place), Marisela Ortega (3rd place), and Natalie Coe (4th place).