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Worm Race Squirms Into Lucerne Valley Elementary

Jo and Worms
Worm Race founder Jo Richards observes a race. Jo and the Lucerne Valley Roadrunners started the event 22 years ago. Photo by Mrs. Stephanie Klinger
They squirmed and wiggled. They slithered slimily seeking a piece of super worm race history. When it was over, five speedy steeds and their 6th-grade handlers had made history at the 22nd Annual Great American Worm Race on Friday.
Jo Richards, the 90-year-old founder of the beloved event, was there encouraging the participants, which included a team of Roadrunner volunteers headed by the local organization’s president, Mandy Gilmore. Also helping out were LVES sixth-grade teachers and school board members (and LVES parents) Chelsea LaGrange and Jason Hansen. 
The 2023 Great American Worm Race Winners are:
• Benjamin DuBoise
• Mariah Levinson
• Alexander Wolverton
• Amee Davalos
• Jose Virruete Contreras
Jo, who regularly waxed poetic for many years as a local newspaper columnist, shared her creative take before and after the annual Worm Race events.
“It’s been 22 years and my worm ‘Fishbait’ hasn’t made it to the finals,” she lamented.
The worm race is funded by local donors. The fund-raising event helps to pay for the Roadrunners' programs that help the youth of Lucerne Valley. Among the Roadrunner programs are the annual Christmas gift giveaway and Trunk or Treat.
For more information on the L.V. Roadrunners, visit
Photos by Mrs. Stephanie Klinger
Wide shot
Worm 3
Worm 4
Worm 4
Worm 5
Worm 6
Worm 7