Tag Archives: Memphis

Life-threatening Cheerleading Fall Leads to Local Triumph

My Fox Memphis published Life-threatening Cheerleading Fall Leads to Local Triumph.

“I was supposed to be doing a front flip and instead dove. I was estimated about 15-feet and just dove and hit the top of my head,” recalled Robinson, “It was like pain all over but at the same time tingling and numb all at the same time. It was so weird; it was like an out of body experience.”

Spirit Holding and Cheersport Join the Varsity Family of Brands

Cheersport LogoMemphis, Tenn., (December 28, 2012) Varsity and Spirit Holding have announced that they are merging, effective immediately. Based in Matthews, N.C., Spirit Holding is the parent company of CHEERSPORT, CheerLogistics and Universal Spirit, and hosts more than 30 competitions each year.

CHEERSPORT’S signature Nationals event, held in Atlanta each February, is the single largest cheer and dance competition in the United States, attracting more than 900 cheerleading and dance teams from around the country.

“Our goal has always been to produce exciting events that are organized and positive for all participants,” said Jeff Fowlkes, President and General Manager of Spirit Holding. “And by teaming up with Varsity, we know that we are partnering with the best in the cheer community. No organization takes better care of its athletes and their safety or cares about their competition experience more than Varsity, and we are proud to be their partner.”

Varsity All Star LogoJohn Newby, Executive Vice President of Varsity and General Manager of Varsity All Star, said, “We are excited to welcome the Spirit Holding team and look forward to working with their entire organization as we continue to focus on producing the best cheer and dance competitions in the world for the athletes and parents we serve.”

Athletes and gym customers should expect enhancements in the future as a result of the merger, including a larger pool of experienced judges and consistent logistical and operational support.

Regarding the new arrangement Fowlkes added, “Perhaps the most exciting aspect about our merger with Varsity is that CHEERSPORT will be able to retain its uniqueness,” added Fowlkes. “Varsity has always allowed its brands the independence they need to retain what makes them special, and that is extremely important to us and to our customers.”

Fowlkes will continue to manage and direct the Spirit Holding operations. Kevin Brubaker will serve as Vice President and Brand Manager of CHEERSPORT, and Adam Thomas will continue to manage Universal Spirit as its Vice President and Brand Manager. Spirit Holdings headquarters will remain at its current location in the Charlotte, N.C. area.

For more information, please contact Sheila Noone, 901-251-5959 or snoone@varsityspirit.com

On the Eve of Title IX’s 40th Anniversary, the Age Old Question Might Finally be Answered

As Title IX celebrates its 40th Anniversary and counts its wins for women’s sports, a new sport is ready to join the ranks.

Memphis, Tenn., June 19, 2012 – Cheerleading, which predates Title IX by roughly 60 years, has long been an athletic outlet for women. Once primarily a men’s activity, female cheerleaders quickly took over the sidelines during World War II, and never left.

USA CheerIt’s a question as old as Title IX itself – Is Cheerleading A Sport? Every year, the physical abilities of cheerleaders are showcased on ESPN and CBS Sports, and now a new sport, STUNT, is vying for Emerging Sport Status from the NCAA. STUNT is about to launch its third season, with a roster that has averaged 22 teams in the last two years.

As a more athletic and challenging style of cheerleading developed, the need for a new form emerged, one that would allow the talented athletes of cheerleading to take their place among the top athletes in the country.

“STUNT has evolved out of a need to develop a format derived from traditional cheerleading that fulfills all requirements of Title IX,” says Bill Seely, Executive Director of USA Cheer, the governing body for cheerleading and the creator of STUNT. “It’s important to ensure a clear distinction between the various athletic disciplines of cheerleading and the roles they play. Traditional cheerleading provides such great value for the institutions they serve and we want to protect that, while at the same time continue to grow cheer’s newest sport, STUNT, which will provide more opportunities for young women and help institutions meet the criteria of Title IX.”

STUNT has been well received by pioneers of women’s sports, who applaud the efforts of USA Cheer to create more opportunities for female athletes to compete. “The Women’s Sports Foundation welcomes the new sport of STUNT into the women’s sports tent, along with other aesthetic sports like gymnastics, diving and some skiing and snowboarding events,” says Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Senior Director of Advocacy for the Women’s Sports Foundation.”STUNT is developing to ensure girls and women are being provided the same educational experience that boys receive, with comparable numbers of competitions, squad sizes, scholarships, and a standard competitive format.”

More information about USA Cheer and STUNT can be found at http://usacheer.net. If you have further questions, please contact Sheila Noone at 901-251-5959.

About the STUNT format

Each STUNT game will comprise four quarters in the following categories: Partner Stunts, Pyramids and Tosses, Group Jumps and Tumbling, and Team Performance. Within each quarter, teams will perform skill sequences of varying levels of difficulty, technical execution and synchronization. Anyone who follows sports will be able to follow STUNT. Teams compete simultaneously, and the head-to-head format simplifies the scoring process, allowing fans to track the results of the competition as each round is completed. Because of the new format, teams will have records and national rankings, which will determine their post season play, much like other sports. In addition, post season play can be tracked by the fans, much like “March Madness.” For more information on STUNT, visit http://usacheer.net.

About USA Cheer

The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for profit organization and is the national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading. USA Cheer exists to serve the entire cheer community, including club cheering (All Star), traditional school based cheer programs and the new sport of STUNT. USA Cheer has three primary objectives: help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; promote safety and safety education for cheer in the United States; and represent the United States of America in international cheer competitions.

Varsity All Star Announces “The Summit”, A New All Levels National Championship

The Summit will take place on May 4-5, 2013 at the Walt Disney World® Resort’s ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Fla.

Memphis, Tenn., May 30, 2012 – Varsity All Star is pleased to announce the launch of the ultimate all levels national championship, The Summit, which will replace the International All Levels Virtual Championship as their end of the season event.

Varsity All Star LogoThe inaugural Summit, which will take place on May 4-5, 2013 at the Walt Disney World® Resort’s ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Fla., will offer 450 bids to the best teams from across the country in Youth, Junior and Senior Levels in non-Worlds divisions to face-off in a live competition, broadcast worldwide on Varsity TV.

Varsity All Star will be selecting teams to take the climb to The Summit by offering bids at their existing World Bid Events and at least eight other two-day events. An anticipated 450 partial paid and at large bids will be offered throughout the 2012-2013 season. The Level Grand Champions from the 2012 International All Levels Championship have already received partial paid bids to defend their titles in 2013.

“The Summit is an opportunity to broaden the field for more athletes, coaches, and gyms from every region of the country to reach their highest potential at this one-of-a-kind event,” says John Newby, Executive Vice President of Varsity All Star. “We are proud to support the USASF and what Worlds has done to recognize All Star’s highest caliber athletes, but we feel the timing is right to create an additional event that showcases athletes in all levels of All Star cheer.”

The Summit was announced at the Varsity All Star annual Gym Owners Conference in Las Vegas on May 22, where it was met with positive feedback from gym owners. “As a small gym owner, I don’t have a Level 5 team that puts us in the running for Worlds. I love the idea of a prestigious, all levels destination event for our teams,” says Mindy Clayton, Gym Owner, Idaho Falls Elite. “We’ve never had an opportunity to do something like this, and I think it will help attract more athletes to our gym.”

More information is available about The Summit at http://varsityallstar.com.

About Varsity

Varsity is the source for all things related to cheerleading and dance team. With a rich heritage and traditions dating back to 1948, Varsity is an innovative global leader comprised of the leading spirit brands and organizations including its educational camps, clinics, competitions and uniforms to teams around the world. Varsity’s National Championships, which are held at the Walt Disney World® Resorts, have been televised on ESPN Networks for more than 25 years. Web-based Varsity TV features thousands of cheerleading and dance team videos and has become a favorite cheer destination for cheerleaders and coaches alike. Varsity has led the way in cheerleading safety as a supporter of the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators since 1987 and as a camp leader training more than 300,000 cheerleaders per year in cheerleading fundamentals with an emphasis on safety. Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Varsity employs 5,000 employees nationwide. For more information about Varsity, please visit http://www.varsity.com.

Varsity All Star Announces The Summit

Varsity Announces its Acquisition of American Cheerleader Magazine

VarsityVarsity Announces its Acquisition of American Cheerleader Magazine.

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE (January 20, 2012)— Varsity Spirit Corp. today announced that it has made an addition to its family of cheerleading and dance brands with the acquisition of American Cheerleader® magazine from Macfadden Performing Arts Media of New York City. Since its founding in 1995, American Cheerleader has enjoyed an enthusiastic following and been an influential and unifying voice for the millions of participants in the cheerleading community across the United States.

Varsity to Live Stream Division 1A of College Championships

Memphis, Tenn., January 12, 2012 – Varsity is pleased to announce that Division 1A Finals in all categories will be available for live streaming on Sunday, January 15, during the National College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championship.

VarsityFor $7.99, cheer and dance team fans will be able to watch Finals as they happen during Day 2 of the National Championship. Full coverage of Division 1A Finals, featuring Cheer, Pom, Hip Hop, Jazz and the Awards Ceremony will begin at 1:30 EST on Sunday, January 15.

“We are thrilled to work with our team to provide this service to cheerleading and dance team fans around the country,” says Nicole Lauchaire, Vice President of Corporate Marketing and Communications. “We know that not everyone can be in Orlando for the Championship, but this gives them a change to watch the exciting team performances in real time.”

Varsity will continue to post video from all routines on http://varsity.com, so fans of all divisions afcan watch their favorite teams.

For more information, visit the Varsity Cheerleading and Dance Page on Facebook. Please share the link with your readers.

About Varsity

Varsity is the source for all things related to cheerleading and dance team. With a rich heritage and traditions dating back to 1948, Varsity is an innovative global leader comprised of the leading spirit brands and organizations including its educational camps, clinics, competitions and uniforms to teams around the world. Varsity’s National Championships, which are held at the Walt Disney World® Resorts, have been televised on ESPN Networks for more than 25 years. Web-based Varsity TV features thousands of cheerleading and dance team videos and has become a favorite cheer destination for cheerleaders and coaches alike. Varsity has led the way in cheerleading safety as a supporter of the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators since 1987 and as a camp leader training more than 300,000 cheerleaders per year in cheerleading fundamentals with an emphasis on safety. Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Varsity employs 5,000 employees nationwide. For more information about Varsity, please visit http://www.varsity.com.

Varsity to Live Stream Division 1A of College Championships

Cheerleaders Pledge 60,000 Hours of Community Service to Date for 2011 National School Spirit Day

Varsity Brands Celebrates 3rd Annual National School Spirit Day on September 9, 2011; More than 200,000 Hours of Community Service Conducted Over Past Two Years

Memphis, TN - According to a recent survey of 1,016 teen girls conducted by Varsity Brands, when concerned about an issue, cheerleaders are more likely than the average teen girl to volunteer (56% vs. 46%) and join an organization within their school (43% vs. 24%).

Varsity Logo

Varsity

“While cheerleaders are recognized for spirit-raising activities all year long, they do so much more to benefit their communities and schools,” said Nicole Lauchaire, Vice President, Corporate Marketing & Communications at Varsity Brands. “That’s why Varsity created National School Spirit Day three years ago. It is a great way to honor the accomplishments of cheerleaders and dancers who are making a difference in communities across the country.”

National School Spirit Day celebrates the leadership among cheerleaders and dancers and is meant to shine a spotlight on the character that being on a cheerleading or dance team builds as well as on all that they do to give back to their schools and communities. Cheerleaders and dance teams across the nation have pledged to conduct at least four hours of community service in the week leading up to National School Spirit Day on September 9th.

“It’s great Varsity created National School Spirit Day to get cheerleaders across the country to come together and do something to give back to their communities,” said Kendall Jenner, reality TV star and cheerleader. As part of National School Spirit Day, Jenner and the Costa Mesa Cheerleading Squad volunteered with Meals on Wheels in Santa Monica, CA to deliver healthy meals to those who are homebound. “This day really brings attention to all the incredible things that cheerleaders are doing.”

Cheerleaders can visit the National School Spirit Day website (www.nationalschoolspiritday.com) to pledge their community service and learn more. Some of the service activities taking place this year include:

  • In addition to the Meals on Wheels community service with Kendall Jenner, in honor of the 10 year anniversary of 9/11, the Costa Mesa Cheerleading Squad is hosting a heroes rally to remember, mourn and never forget. They are raising funds to donate to a 9/11 charity as well as having a collection center to send overseas to troops. Truly a school and community event, it is not just the cheer team donating service time but also the football team and entire community.
  • Lady’s Island Middle School cheerleaders are collecting school supplies for the Franciscan Center of St. Helena Island, SC during the week of September 5-9th. The Franciscan Center is an outreach center staffed by approximately 60 volunteers that offers academic assistance, computer training, and adult English language classes to the community.
  • Shelby County West Middle School is celebrating National School Spirit Day by having a sleep-over and making hundreds of cards to send overseas to our troops. They are writing customized messages in each card to give our soldiers a little love from home. The cheerleaders feel this is the least they can do for all the hard work and sacrifices our soldiers make for our country.
  • The St. Paul’s High School “Bulldogs” are cleaning their community park and the feeder school buses in their community and baking warm cookies to deliver at the local nursing home. In previous years, they have washed cars and cleaned the school buses inside outside for the upcoming Football season. They feel community is what drives them to become better examples in the school.

“Cheerleaders and dancers are doing this year-round in their communities,” said Lauchaire. “National School Spirit Day encourages them to be visible leaders in their communities, and hopefully, inspires others to do the same.”

Taking a closer look at cheerleaders specifically, the Varsity Teen Girl Study also revealed the following:

  • Cheerleaders are more likely than the general teen (57% vs. 46%) to hold a leadership position in or out of school; cheerleaders are more likely to be a part of Student Council (33% vs. 25%) and programs connected to the arts than the average teen girl.
  • 81% of cheerleaders have grade point averages of 3.5.
  • Ninety-three (93) percent of teen girls participate in one or more activities at school.
  • 65 percent of high school girls participate in a school sport. The top 10 most popular include track and field, soccer, tennis, basketball, volleyball, softball, cross country, swimming, cheerleading, and dance team.
  • A majority say that playing some type of sport/spirit team generally makes them happier (78%), builds their overall confidence (73%) and helps to relieve stress (69%).

Varsity’s study surveyed 1,016 teen girls ages 13-18 to represent the roughly 14 million teen girls across the United States and sought to find out more about this powerful teen demographic, how they spend their time, how influential they are as a group and where they hold the most power of influence.

About Varsity

Varsity is the source for all things related to cheerleading and dance team. With a rich heritage and traditions dating back to 1948, Varsity is an innovative global leader comprised of the leading spirit brands and organizations including its educational camps, clinics, competitions and uniforms to teams around the world. Varsity’s National Championships, which are held at the Walt Disney World® Resorts, have been televised on ESPN Networks for more than 25 years. Web-based Varsity TV features thousands of cheerleading and dance team videos and has become a favorite cheer destination for cheerleaders and coaches alike. Varsity has led the way in cheerleading safety as a supporter of the American Association of Cheerleading Coaches and Administrators since 1987 and as a camp leader training more than 300,000 cheerleaders per year in cheerleading fundamentals with an emphasis on safety. Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Varsity employs 5,000 employees nationwide. For more information about Varsity, please visit http://www.varsity.com.

Cheerleaders Pledge 60,000 Hours of Community Service to Date for 2011 National School Spirit Day