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What is LEST?

It stands for the Lutheran Elementary Schools Tournament and is hosted every February by Concordia University in Portland. The first LEST was held in 1962 with four Portland area schools participating in a boys basketball tournament. A few years later a volleyball competition was added for the girls. As word of the tournament spread, schools from out of the Portland area (Idaho, Montana, California, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington) began traveling by train, plane, or bus to participate in LEST. Over the years, additional activities and competitions were added, and there are now more than 15 individual and/or team events in which students can participate. Over 1000 fifth through eighth graders from as many as 21 Lutheran elementary schools from around the northwest now attend LEST every February.

What is the goal of LEST?

The primary goal of LEST is to provide an organized structure to promote fun, skill development, fair play, and fellowship among Lutheran elementary school youth through academic, athletic, and recreational activities. The tournament is always held on the Thursday through Saturday before the third Monday of the month in February.

Who can participate?

All of Hope’s fifth through eighth graders are encouraged to participate in LEST. Students may participate in one or more of the competitions. Most competitions have a certain number of participants that are allowed from each school, so just because a student signs up to participate in an event doesn’t mean that he/she will be chosen to be Hope’s LEST representative in that event. For most events teachers will either chose the participant(s) for a certain event or we will have in-school competitions to determine the students who will represent Hope at LEST.  Also, some events such as basketball and cheerleading are limited to certain grade levels.

Competition Descriptions

LEST Competition Descriptions


Congratulations Hope Students!

Results of LEST Competitions: LEST 2017 Hope Awards



LEST Master Schedule – Concordia University

Find up-to-date schedules here for LEST 2017


LEST 2017 Information – Updated 2/1/17

LEST is occurring February 15th- 18th, 2017

Letter to Hope Families


Basketball Brackett

LEST 2017 Basketball – as of 1-24-17

Drama Schedule

LEST Drama Schedule – 2017 – as of 1-25-17

Knowledge Bowl Schedule

Knowledge Bowl Bracket 2017 – as of 1-25-17

LEST Hotel Reminder

If you haven’t already, be sure to book your hotel room. As mentioned previously, again this year we have booked the Embassy Suites, Portland Airport. The room rate for a two double bed suite is $144, which includes a delicious and bountiful complimentary breakfast for all, happy hour drinks and appetizers, indoor pool, and refrigerators/microwaves in each suite. Rooms are reserved under “Hope Lutheran School” and can be reserved by calling the hotel directly at (800) 821-5879 or online at  (block code: HLS) no later than January 25, 2017 or until they are fully booked.

LEST Schedule – As of 2/3/17   Hope Schedule Feb 3 2017

Note that due to Concordia University basketball games, the opening and closing ceremonies are earlier than usual, and chess will now be run on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning. We do not have specific schedules for basketball games yet.

Our first events begin Thursday morning this year, with the knowledge bowl informational session starting at 10:15 AM, and possibly some morning basketball games. Everyone please try to attend the opening ceremonies at Concordia’s gym beginning early this year at 2:00 PM; this is where we kick off LEST and celebrate our Champion of Character nominee. We usually all try to sit together on the right hand side towards the back of the gym as you walk in, below our Hope banner.

LEST Spirit Days – Feb. 9 – 15, 2017

All students in preschool through 8th grade are invited to join us in spirit days as we gear up for LEST!

Thursday, Feb 9 – Color Wars (each teacher/grade picks a color)

Friday, Feb 10 – Sports Spirit: Support your favorite team or represent a sport!

Monday, Feb 13 – Pajama Day – roll out of bed and come in your PJ’s

Tuesday, Feb 14 – Wacky Tacky Day – just use your imagination on this one

Wednesday, Feb 15 – Blue and Gold Day – wear our school colors, show your school pride! (Hair and face painting OK this day.)

These are optional spirit days and students not participating will need to come in school uniforms as usual.