May 11th, 2018 — The Vancouver high school track meet started yesterday at Point Grey High School and finished today at UBC. In the 1950’s and 1960’s this meet known as the Vancouver and District Inter-High School Track and Field Meet was the biggest sporting event in Vancouver. A week of qualifying heats at Empire Stadium covered extensively with words and pictures by both newspapers with speculation as to who would beat Percy Williams record, who would be the next Harry Jerome; would it be Don Basham or Barrie Ihaksi? The finals held the following week was a designated school day so every student from every school was there, twenty thousand of them, screaming their heads off. There was a story in the home editions of the Vancouver Sun during the day updating the positions of the leading schools and when the meet was over a 72 point headline with the winning school’s name at the top of the final edition and pages of pictures inside. As you can see from my picture above showing the senior boys 1500 meters running by the grandstands at UBC things have changed a lot since then. Not many spectators, no mention at all in the local news, and possibly a quote from a mother sums it up, “My daughter qualified for the 400 meters but didn’t really want to come because she didn’t want to miss class”. The picture below from the Vancouver School Board archives shows a small section of the crowd in 1950.