Victoria East cheer camp inspires future cheerleaders
Aug. 12, 2017 at 5:57 p.m.
Updated Aug. 13, 2017 at 6 a.m.
Avery Rodriguez clutched a red pompom in one hand and a black pompom in the other.
After watching a Victoria East High School cheerleader demonstrate how to use them, Avery began shaking the pompoms as fast as she could.
"I want to be a cheerleader one day," Avery, 5, said.
The Victoria East High School Cheerleading Camp drew about 97 students from every age level to learn dance, cheers and stunts with the school's cheerleading team.
Middle school cheer teams that attended the camp included Stroman Middle School, Howell Middle School and Bloomington Middle School.
Learning a dance routine to "Fake Love" by Drake was Stroman Middle School cheerleader Gwendolyn Gonzalez.
"It's been fun," Gwendolyn, 12, said. "I get to be part of the school."
The opportunity to give back to the community is why she enjoys being involved with the team.
A Victoria East High School freshman cheer squad was created for the first time this school year because of the high amount of students who tried out, said Kristie Dicken, cheer coach at Victoria East.
"They are good representatives of the freshman class," Dicken said. "It gives them the preparation to move into a varsity position."
If numbers continue to increase, the freshman squad will become a permanent addition to the school's teams, she said.
Varsity cheerleader, Jalen Wenzel, a freshman, used the camp to learn how to work with the younger students and inspire them.
"I enjoy helping others," Jalen, 15, said. "I'm trying to learn new things."