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Are You a Downy or a Redhead?

One of Peck's most beloved community traditions is our Downy/Redhead competition—a challenge between the Downys and Redheads to see which team earns the most points for character, good work, school spirit, and core values.

Initiated in the early 1950s by Taz Brower (Girls Athletic Director 1951-58, and longtime girls lacrosse coach), the Downy/Redhead competition assigns students to either the Redhead or Downy team—named after two varieties of woodpecker native to Northern NJ, and originally proposed through a student contest.

This is an affiliation that students, their siblings, and their immediate family members, hold for life. 

Though the Downy/Redhead activities and events have taken many forms and structures over the years, one thing has remained constant: the palpable joy of community togetherness. 

Now, throughout the year students earn points for their respective teams through structured competitions, by earning “Job Well Done” tickets for exhibiting behavior that exemplifies the core values, and, in the culminating event of the year, Downy/Redhead Day, a field-day event where students compete in a multitude of physical and mental competitions.

Downy/Redhead and Field Day Moments Through the Years

1970s

1980s

1990s

2000s