Buffalo Jills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on Draft Day

The Buffalo Bills opened up Ralph Wilson Stadium for a Draft Day Party for season ticket holders. Phil of the Buffalo Pro Cheer Blog was there and has plenty of photos and video.

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[Phil's photos]

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Saints Cheerleaders Find a Balance Between NFL, Attending University

By Jack LeBlanc
Daily Reveille

When Bethany Tonguis tried out for the Saintsations dance team four years ago, she had no idea what she was getting into.

“When I first tried out, I thought we just danced on the sidelines,” Tonguis said.

But Tonguis, psychology senior, quickly figured out there was a lot more to being a professional cheerleader than looking pretty and performing halftime shows.

The Saintsations are the dance team for the New Orleans Saints, and they are hosting preliminary auditions Sunday at 9 a.m. at the Saints Practice Facility on Airline Highway in Metairie.

The Saintsations perform on the sidelines at all Saints home games, and their annual swimsuit calendar and the “behind-the-scenes” television shows about the making of the calendar have turned the team into regional celebrities.

“You meet so many people and learn so much about yourself,” Tonguis said. “You are working with professional photographers and businessmen.”

Team member Courtney Harper, biological sciences freshman, said she was intimidated when she first came to tryouts, but she’s happy she did it now.

“I came in straight from high school to try out,” Harper said. “When my friend called to tell me I made the team, I started running around the restaurant like a crazy person. I think it was the happiest moment of my life.”

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Bethany, Lashelle, Meagan, Courtney and Alexis

Besides performing at the home games, the girls make appearances throughout the year at private parties and charity events. The girls have even made trips to the Middle East to visit the troops stationed there.

“We’ve been on two different military tours — the first to Afghanistan and Kuwait and the second to Iraq,” Tonguis said. “It’s just a humbling and incredible experience to meet the people protecting our country, and it’s so different there. It’s not like you can go to Wal-Mart if you forget something.”

The girls also traveled to Mexico and London to represent the Saints and the NFL.
But being a Saintsation isn’t all fun and games.

Tonguis especially remembers shooting the swimsuit calendar a few years ago.

“We were shooting on a big beautiful horse,” Tonguis said. “When I got on the horse, it started freaking out, and it kicked me off. I flew into the air, and I broke my tailbone when I landed. But I got up and I shot the rest of the calendar. Sometimes you’ve just got to take one for the team.”

Team member Lashelle Johnson, business administration sophomore, said time management is the hardest part of being a Saintsation.

“It’s a big commitment between school, work and Saintsations,” Johnson said. “We’re always in our cars.”

The girls drive to Mandeville at least twice a week for practice, in addition to games during the season and appearances across the state.

Next season the girls will get a little break, as one weekly practice will be held in Baton Rouge.

The girls also work at the NFL draft and the Superbowl festivities, holding a free clinic for young girls in the Superbowl host city.

Team member Meagan McDaniel, communication studies senior who was a Tiger Girl a few years ago, said she thinks being on a professional cheerleading team is completely different than performing on a collegiate team.

“I think it’s another level of experiences,” McDaniel said. “It’s professional, but it’s also a lot of fun.”

The girls will be getting ready for tryouts this week, as returning members have to go through the same process as new applicants.

“When people look at our tryout process, it looks intimidating. It is a hard tryout process but it’s not the competitive air you’d think it’d be,” Tonguis said. “You learn a lot about yourself and the other girls. Every girl has a fair chance.”

[New Orleans Saintsations]

Scenes from Ben-Gals Semi-Finals

2009cbcaudCheck out these new photos on Cincinnati.com

Watch the Sea Gals finals live on Sunday

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Be the first to see the 2009 Sea Gals!

Seahawks.com: Watch the Sea Gals audition finals on Sunday May 3, 2009 live on Seahawks.com. Hosted by Seahawks Insider Tony Ventrella and former Sea Gal of the Sequoia, the three-hour webcast will feature final auditions by all the finalists, Sea Gal features and the naming of the 2009 Sea Gals.

Live video coverage will begin at 5:00pm PT right here on Seahawks.com.

(In the meantime, you can click the above link to watch last year’s webcast.)

Redhawks to Hold Final Dance Team Tryouts Saturday Night

The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks will host the final tryout for the First International Bank & Trust RedHawks Dance Team on Saturday, May 2 at 7:00 p.m. at the Wallman Wellness Center, located on 18th St. N. on the NDSU campus. Registration is from 6:30-7:00 p.m.

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Marissa Parmer, RedHawks Dance Team Coach, will conduct the tryouts. Dancers will learn a dance routine and kick routine, and will need to do a demo of the following moves: toe touch; jump of choice; split leap; single/double turn; split and a featured skill of dancer’s choice. Dancers are asked to come ready as if you were performing at a game with hair and make-up done. All dancers must be 18 years of age or older.

Parmer is in her first season as team coach after being a member of the inaugural First International Bank & Trust Dance Team in 2008. She is a former Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleader and is the owner of ONE Training and is a Fitness Specialist and Head Dance Coach at Minnesota State University-Moorhead.

For more information on the tryouts, please contact Marissa Parmer at parmer923@msn.com.

[Redhawks Dance Team Auditions]

Suns Seek Dance Team Director

spotted this on the NBA Jobs Website this morning:

Director, Suns Dancers – Phoenix Suns (Phoenix, AZ)

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The Phoenix Suns Game Entertainment department is currently hiring for a full-time Director, Suns Dancers. This individual will be responsible for: managing all aspects of the Phoenix Suns Dance Team including but not limited to, auditions, practice and game scheduling, personal appearances, photo shoots, choreography, payroll and marketing of team.

Required qualifications include:
• Minimum one-year experience as NBA Dance Team Director or equivalent professional team (highly preferred)
• Strong organizational skills
• Flexible schedule – ability to work nights and weekends
• Choreographer (highly preferred)

The Phoenix Suns are an equal opportunity employer. M/F/D/V

Note: When you apply for this job online, you will be required to answer the following questions:

1. Yes/No: I have at least one year of experience as a Dance Team Director for a sports team.

Apply online here.

Broncos Cheerleader Vote

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Click here to select your top 26 candidates for the for the 2009 Denver Broncos Cheerleaders!

Local Dance Instructor Could Become Texan Cheerleader

Kingwood Now: Estela Frias (more commonly referred to as Miss Yvette) has tried out for the Texans Cheerleaders before but each year she has come close but never made the team. This year she could make it with your vote.

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She has taught dance in the Kingwood area for several years, molding many of the young girls into KHS Fillies. According to Michelle Parnell, “Estela has been a great inspiration to my daughter as both a dance teacher and role model.”

The Texans have narrowed their choices for the 2009 Houston Texans Cheerleaders to 42 talented women and Estela is one of them. Now it’s up to the fans to help the Texans decide which of these women should be included on the final squad of 30.

If you would like to vote visit http://www.houstontexans.com/cheerleaders/TexansCheerleaderVoting.asp

Texans Cheerleaders Finalists

The Texans have narrowed their choices for the 2009 Houston Texans Cheerleaders to 42 talented women. Now it’s up to the fans to help the Texans decide which of these women should be included on the final squad.

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Voting ends at noon on Thursday, April 30. Visit Texans TV that afternoon to watch the live streaming video of the squad being announced.

[See and Cast Your Vote for the Finalists]

[Houston Texans Cheerleaders Tryout Coverage]

Desperados Dancers Reinvented?

This is one of those “can you help a sista’ out?” kind of posts.

The Dallas Cowboys introduced a new dance team during this year’s draft day festivities. The team is called the Dallas Cowboys Rhythm & Blue Dance Team, presented by Miller Lite. Most of the R&B Dancers appear to be former Dallas Desperados Dancers. Their performance indicates that they will have a much more urban hip-hop vibe than either the Desperados Dancers, or the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders (who also performed during the festivities.)

That’s about all we know about them at this point. Who they are, where they will perform, and their overall role as part of the Cowboys organization is a bit of a mystery, so if anyone has the scoop, please let us know.

In the meantime, you can watch two different videos of their recent performance