2022 May Day Play Day at Chapman School

Frankie Marroquin is all focus as she takes her turn in the baton relay. Vivian Espinoza looks on. The May event encompasses physical fitness, leadership, sportsmanship, and all Chapman students participate.
At left, Xoie Smoot peeks at her
competition. About
32 teams of 10 to
12 students (of varying grade levels) participate in the event.
Photos by Gary
Jacob Tuitsai takes off
in one of several
relay events on May
27 at Chapman
Elementary School’s
May Day, Play Day
fitness challenge.
Parent volunteer Kenia Crespo works with student Sara Melliz in the side-shuffle agility drill. Chapman’s award-winning May Day, Play Day takes place annually on the last Friday in May and is a fitness-day reward after a long school year of testing and hard work. It is a celebration of “fun, fitness, music and ice cream,” says teacher Richard Clay, who has been the May Day, Play Day coordinator for much of its quarter-century history. Parent volunteers were thrilled for the return of May Day, Play Day this year and assisted in helping students with the
eight separate games, as well as manning the water stations, Clay says.
Student Xyaire Smoot blazes on his baton relay leg during the annual Chapman School May Day,
Play Day on May 27
Sara Melliz navigates the course in the balance relay like a champ. The fitness day included teams of students taking part in eight events.
Madilyn Real refreshes after a morning of fun competition with
fellow students.
Benjamin Ashley shows his top-notch sprint form.
Started in 1995, the May Day, Play Day celebrated its 25th anniversary this year (after cancellation due to COVID the past two years).The annual
fitness fun day, which is a reward for a year of testing and classroom work, ends with students treated to ice cream. Guests at the 2022 event
were Dr. Emmanuel Annor (served as Chapman principal for six years); Derek Richardson, NBA referee of more than 20 years; and Tenesha WareDaniels, commissioner of the Women’s Drew Pro-Am Basketball League.
Lilly Bonilla goes airborne as she shows off her jump rope skills, one
of eight events in the May Day, Play Day.
After more than 20 years as coordinator, kindergarten teacher Richard Clay is stepping down as the May Day, Play Day leader. When Clay took
over as Play Day coordinator in 1996, he turned a routine fitness event into an award-winning, grand celebration of fitness, fun and teamwork.
Emily Espinoza pitches a bean bag
while teammate Gatsiry Carbajal
waits her turn. This event was
one of eight May Day, Play Day
Victoria Mena is flying on her
leg of the football relay. Each of
the 32 teams were represented by students of all grades, kindergarten to fifth.