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What is the Oldest Annual Prep Track Meet You Know Of?

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  • What is the Oldest Annual Prep Track Meet You Know Of?

    The Russell Cup in Carpinteria, CA will be staged for the 100th time next April. Began in 1914, a year before the California State Meet, but missed some years during WWII so the centennial will be 2019's event.

    Over years the notable competitors included Olympians from Bud Houser to Allyson Felix. Now days the meet is open to HS teams from small schools.

    So we are curious to know: Are posters here aware of other long-lived annual HS meets?

  • #2
    Not sure, jc203, if the New York Interscholastic Athletic Association Meet still exists but it was one of the first annual high school track meets that began in 1879 at the Manhatten Athletic Club on May 17th. They had at least an annual meet through 1909 with the 31st annual meet held in Williamsbridge on 5/18/1909.

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    • #3
      Unless the OP is looking for HS only meets, the obvious answer is the Penn Relays.

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      • #4
        Exeter and Andover have been having their annual meet since 1889,

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        • #5
          Originally posted by mcgato View Post
          Unless the OP is looking for HS only meets, the obvious answer is the Penn Relays.
          note that the question isn't about the oldest meet; just "other long-lived meets"

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          • #6
            Originally posted by gh View Post
            note that the question isn't about the oldest meet; just "other long-lived meets"
            True, but the subject line does ask the question about "the oldest".

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            • #7
              I was curious about other meets that have been run consistently over a long period of time.

              Not necessarily trying to nail down the earliest start date for a meet, but that would be part of the equation to define "long-lived" :-)
              More slippery than you might imagine.

              Do we consider total years since the first meet or the number of meets actually contested?
              As for "high school" I guess that would mean a meet that included high school competition throughout. While always featuring preps, there was a period of time in the 1930's when the collegiate freshman races were also conducted at the Russell Cup.

              We think Russell Cup is probably the most long-lived prep meet in California. It predates the State Meet by a year, but the Russell Cup skipped more wartime years so the State Meet centennial is already past. At the collegiate level the Cal-Stanford meet is several years older.

              Then too, there were precursors to the CA State Meet that were not called the State Meet. And that is the case with the Russell Cup as well.

              Anyway, we'd enjoy hearing about about any other HS inclusive meets that match your own interpretation of oldest or long-lived!!!
              Sounds like Exeter/Andover would be hard to top if it is still being contested.

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              • #8
                Philadelphia Inter-Academic League (InterAc) has contested its outdoor championships every year beginning in 1887. It includes Philadelphia area prep schools, and currently includes Episcopal Academy, William Penn Charter, Haverford School, Malvern Prep, Germantown Academy and Springtide Chestnut Hill Academy.

                Other schools to have been league members for track include several defunct schools: Cheltenham Military Academy, Rugby Academy, De Lancey School; and some still in existence, including Friends' Central.

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                • #9
                  Mansfield (Ohio) Mehock Relays have been going on since 1927.

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                  • #10
                    I believe the "oldest annual prep track meet" that is "long lived" ( under same original name) is the Russell Cup Meet in Carpinteria, CA.
                    Mr. And Mrs. Howland Shaw Russell donated a silver cup to the Carpinteria Union School District in 1914. Trophy named for his wife, Mrs Katherine Thayer Spring Russell to School (grammar and high school) teams scoring most points and winning meet for three years .
                    Events were classified by weight of athlete into 5 levels A-E (<60 lbs- >120 lbs).
                    Times and heights were not recorded not until 1920'meets d

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                    • #11
                      Sorry was cut off from post ( timed out???)
                      Frank Wykoff was named dean of Carpinteria grammar school in 1938 and kept Russell Cup tradition alive.
                      Records for events did not start until 1920's.. Bud Houser they SP 56'3" in 1922 Meet and stood for decades
                      Mr Russell was Harvard grad, 1896 and died in 1918 while in US Army at age 45 from acute illness in Florida base transferred to Mass Gen Hospital and died on surgical table
                      Very good bio of Russell in : 1962 Carpinteria History, Grove to Cove, pp 71-73.
                      Mrs Russell bought all winner of every event in all A-E categories a blue sweater with SBS gold letter on front. I wonder how many grandchildren have these souvenirs in their attics?

                      Amazing a small town still honors Mrs Russell with the meet in her name 100 year later.. The Russell Cup Meet
                      Last edited by midwestfan; 10-12-2018, 04:49 PM.

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                      • #12
                        NYIAA died out before the first World War. I'll post again that the oldest continuous scholastic meet I'm aware of is the Philadelphia Inter-Ac, held every year since it's first meet in 1887. The formal name has never varied.

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                        • #13
                          The Columbiana County Meet in Ohio has been held continuously since 1904 with no break for wars, etc.

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                          • #14
                            Perhaps dj can also tell us what was the first year that Penn Relays had prep or other high school events.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Halfmiler2 View Post
                              Perhaps dj can also tell us what was the first year that Penn Relays had prep or other high school events.
                              The first year for the Penn Relays was 1895. There were three prep school mile relays and one high school mile relay:
                              Prep 1: Cheltenham Military Academy 4:02 1/2; 2. Haverford School ("far behind")
                              Prep 2: Germantown Academy 4:04 2/5; 2. William Penn Charter (60yds back)
                              Prep 3: Episcopal Academy 4:15 - ; 2. Delancey School (100yds back)
                              High School: Central (Philadelphia) 3:57 1/5; 2. Central Manual (Phila.) (100yds back)

                              The six prep schools were all in the Inter-Ac league (see earlier posts), while the two high schools were the two oldest boys public high schools in Phila.

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