Passing the baton: Cheerleaders ‘dance through the decades’ with local youth


Juniors Keely Schramm and Mallonee Biehl lead the final practice in the BFAC before halftime. Each participant received a shirt and got to keep the props used in the show. Photo by T. Gustafson

Cheerleaders stayed busy with the annual youth dance clinic on Friday, January 24 with a two-hour learning session and a halftime performance at the home boys basketball game against York.

The dance, abiding by a “Dancing Through the Decades” theme, was taught to the participants almost directly after school Friday until 4:30. The cheerleaders themselves learned this routine prior to the clinic at their own practices. Cheer sponsor Darby Davidson compiled a mashup of music from different timeframes and also designed shirts.

“Our responsibilities on the day of the clinic were to teach the dances to the littles and mainly just keep them on track, help them if they got confused and take them on many bathroom breaks,” Kacy Starck ’21 said. “It’s always very exhausting, but, in the end, it is worth it to have the little kids look up to you.”

A performance for the parents was held right after the clinic in the armory. Later that night, the cheerleaders returned to the ’89 gym to cheer for the two varsity basketball games being held there. Prior to the planned halftime routine, they reunited with the young participants in the Burkley Fine Arts Center and continued practicing. Following the completion of the first half of the boys’ game, the group took center court and put on one final show for the packed stands.


Hannah Knigge ’20 and Kacy Starck ’21 bust out air guitars for the routine. “I think this year’s cheer clinic is the best one I’ve been apart of,” Starck said. “I loved the way that we did the dance this year where we had constant movement, and I think it flowed really well.” Photo by T. Gustafson

“My favorite part would have to be performing the dance at the game,” Erica Mosher ’21 said. “It’s nice to see everything that we worked on finally come together and see the kids have fun.”

While the performance itself is what most fans and parents witnessed on Friday, the behind-the-scenes work from both the cheerleaders and the participants assisted in making the routine come together. For some members of the cheer squad, this part of the clinic is just as important.

“My absolute favorite part is getting to hang out with the kids,” Starck said. “I’ve always liked getting to be with kids and so teaching them dances and having them look up to us cheerleaders is very rewarding.”