Moore County High School cheerleaders Amber Schuller and Kaitlyn Dangerfield earned All-American status during a team cheer camp held at Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville July 16-19.
With the honor, both MCHS cheerleaders have earned the opportunity to cheer in parades later this fall and this winter.
Schuller hopes to be one of more than 500 high school cheerleaders and dancers from across the U.S. who will be performing in the world famous London New Year’s Day Parade.
The individuals invited to perform in the parade qualified for the trip after being selected as an All American at one of the summer camps hosted by Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA), National Cheerleaders Association (NCA), United Spirit Association (USA), Universal Dance Association (UDA) and National Dance Alliance (NDA). All Americans are selected to try out based on superior cheerleading skills at camps across the country.
Only the top 12 percent of the cheerleaders who attend Varsity summer camps earn the chance to march in one of the holiday parades.
“We had to learn a dance, and a cheer and then we had to do two jumps — to tryout — and then they picked,” said Schuller of her experience in Cookeville. “I’m not for sure how many girls from camp tried out, I just know the seniors from our squad tried out and me and Kaitlyn made it.”
Now Schuller is faced with perhaps an even bigger task — raising the money needed to travel to London.
“It will cost (approximately) $3,130, along with the cost of going to Georgia. When we are over there, we have to pay for our drinks, one meal a day, travel insurance and my passport. So there are a lot of out of pocket expenses,” Schuller said, adding that her $800 deposit is due Sept. 6.
She’s now actively trying to raise the needed funds.
“I called some of the (local) stores around here … I’m trying to raise money myself … selling stuff (clothes),” she added. “I’m very stressed. If I don’t have the deposit by (Sept. 6) I won’t get to go.”
Dangerfield is one of more than 500 selected who will perform in the 2013 UCA/UDA Thanksgiving Tour at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla.
The individuals invited to perform in the parade are part of a select group of cheerleaders and dancers chosen as All-Americans during Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA) and Universal Dance Association (UDA) summer camps across the country.
All Americans are selected via tryout based on either superior cheerleading or dance skills. Only the top 12 percent of the cheerleaders and dancers from UCA or UDA camps earn the chance to march in a holiday parade of this caliber.
Dangerfield will perform with the UCA/UDA All-Americans group in the pre-parade at the Magic Kingdom Park on Thanksgiving Day.
“Being named an All-American, there are some other trips that they qualified for also,” said Kaitlyn’s mom, Sunya Dangerfield. “We are not going on the London trip; we have decided to go to Orlando instead.”
Meanwhile, Schuller, who has never flown, is doing her best to make it overseas.
“It’s really exciting to me because I’ve never flown,” she said. “Just the experience of getting to go to another country, because I never thought I’d get to go is exciting. I think it would be really cool to see how things are other than in the United States … to see how things work over there.”
In addition to performing in the London parade, the All Americans will have the chance to tour London during their seven-day trip.
“This is the 26th year we’ve been able to bring talented cheerleaders to London, where they can showcase their skills to a very enthusiastic international audience,” said Mike Fultz, the Varsity International Event Coordinator.
Added Schuller, “My dad would like to because he’s seen ‘Taken’ and ‘Taken 2,’ so he’s really worried. He is very protective. But he said if we don’t raise enough money for him to go, he’s not going to stop me, because they said it was well chaperoned.”
Anyone interested in making a donation may call Schuller at (931) 588-6486.
—By ROBERT HOLMAN, MCN Editor