MVC 2014 Banquet and Awards Recap

Kaitlyn, 2nd Year MVC
Vikings.com

The 2014-2015 Minnesota Vikings Cheerleader season came to an end on Friday, February 20th as the end of the year banquet went underway. Held at the beautiful Bearpath Golf and Country Club, the evening was nothing short of amazing. As the girls arrived, we reminisced about the incredible season we had, and caught up on what we had missed in each other’s lives over the past month. It was comforting to be with the MVC family once again.

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The evening began with a wonderful video created by Ted Kopacek and Chad Ryburn, showing clips of dances, appearances, gameday, Probowl footage and even some funny outtakes throughout the year. It was amusing to see our costumes quickly change from two pieces to snowsuits and see our adaption to the outdoor stadium. We then continued the night by honoring each captain and the memories we will never forget about them. In return, the captains reminded us of humorous moments and heartfelt memories about each person on their small teams. There was laughter, tears, musical talent and evening some unforgettable impressions.

Next, Probowl Cheerleader Kaylee spoke of her experiences in Arizona and the excitement of performing on Probowl gameday. This was followed by an awards presentation from head coach Tami Krause. Our awards are special because they are voted on by our fellow teammates. The evening wrapped up with speeches from Tami, and assistant coaches Theresa Baugus and Brianna Stepanek. They shared inspirational words about the team, the season, memories they would never forget and lifelong lessons that we will keep with us forever.

The banquet may have been an end to the 2014-2015 season, but the memories we shared and bonds we created will last a LIFETIME!!

AWARDS PRESENTED:

“Most Calendar Sales Award” – Kayla C

“Most Appearances Award” – Jeanne

“Taking One for the Team Award” – Brooke

“Shining Star Award” – Kaylee

“Team Pride Award” – Saral and Kaitlyn

“Best Turns Award” – Lauryn

“Best Kicks Award” – Molly

“Best Energy Award” – Rhea

“Best Crowd Interaction Award” – Blair

“Best Fitness Award” – Karen

“Rookie of the Year Award” – Elyssa

“Thunder Award” – Mollie

“Best Snap/Sharpness Award” – Rhea

“Most Improved Dancer Award” – Taylor

“Best Glamour Award”- Kristy

“Most Improved Performer Award” – Kelsey

“Angel Award” – Lauryn

“Fight, Row, Charge Award”- Jacqui

“Total Package Award” – Kaylee

“Best Overall Dancer Award” – Lauryn

“Most Valuable Cheerleader Award” – Kristin and Kaylee

Photo of the Day – February 26


A Philadelphia Wings Angel

Pro Bowl Cheerleaders Practice

The Pro Bowl Cheerleaders getting in a little practice during Pro Bowl Week.

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Charger Girls to Host Two Pre-Audition Workshops

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The road to becoming a member of the 2015 Charger Girls begins Sunday, March 8 with a pre-audition workshop from 2-5 pm in the Jenny Craig Pavilion at the University of San Diego. A second workshop will be held on Sunday, March 15, also at Jenny Craig Pavilion. Registration begins at 1:30 pm.

With more than 400 dancers annually auditioning for a spot on the Charger’s official dance team, pre-registration for the workshop is recommended as space is limited. Pre-registration can be done here. The non-refundable fee is $45 for one workshop or $75 to attend both workshops. On-site cash-only registration also will be accepted on a first come, first serve basis.

Pre-audition workshops are designed to prepare interested dancers for the auditions process and introduce the style of choreography performed by the Charger Girls. The choreography taught and material presented at each workshop will vary. Material presented will include application tips, style guides, interview prep and more. Attendees will have the opportunity to speak with current Charger Girls, and participate in a Q & A session with Charger Girls Director Lisa Simmons.

“We host a workshop every year to give a better understanding of the entire process,” said Simmons. “We work with them on dance technique and choreography in a supportive, non-competitive environment. This year we added an additional workshop to hopefully help them leave feeling more prepared and confident for the upcoming auditions. We do our best to prepare them for what they can expect in April.”

The Charger Girls perform at all home games and appear in the team’s annual swimsuit calendar. They also serve as ambassadors for the organization at hundreds of business, community and charity events throughout the year.

The Jenny Craig Pavilion is located on the University of San Diego campus at 5998 Alcalá Park.

Photo of the Day – February 25

A Pair of Dallas Stars Ice Girls

Chicago Blitz auditions Thursday!

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The Chicago Blitz, a proud member of the American Indoor Football League, is expanding its organization to include for the first time ever a professional dance team. Jenny Hinz, the Director of the Chicago Blitz Girlz informs us of their upcoming Auditions, and additional information is below:

Chicago, Are you Ready to Go Pro?

Chicago Blitz Girlz Auditions
February 26 8:30-11pm
*FFC Gym East Lakeview, 3657 N Pinegrove Ave, Chicago Il 60613.

Auditions are $20. Come camera ready as we will be filming the web series: Chicago Blitz Dancers, Making the Team! Email chicagoblitzdancers@gmail.com to register or receive additional information.

Registration Starts at 8:15pm
o Train and bus nearby, as well as pay to park
o Plan to come early so you can find the place.
o $20

What should I wear?
Hair and make-up camera ready! Wear something form fitting but comfortable. Belly shirts are not required. If you have black or yellow consider wearing the colors to support the Chicago Blitz!

Pro Bowl Cheerleaders Cheer Clinic

During Pro Bowl Week, the Pro Bowl Cheerleaders put on a Cheer Clinic at Pioneer Community Park

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Photo of the Day – February 24

A member of the Jacksonville Sharks Attack Dance Team

From Nunnery to Honey Bears Sisterhood

By Burt Constable
The Daily Herald

After graduating from her all-girl high school in 1964, Cathy Core entered the convent of the Sisters of Charity on her path to becoming a nun.

On Friday night, Core, 68, of Wheaton, will be celebrating a different sort of life’s work when her sisters of the Chicago Honey Bears reunite at a charity event Friday in Addison.

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“There’s just a sisterhood, and part of that sisterhood has to do with Cathy,” says Suzy Kopp-Jones of Bartlett, one of many alums of Core’s Honey Bears dance squad that roamed the sidelines at Chicago Bears football games a generation ago, and still remains close.

“It’s a pretty special little sorority,” says Jackie Nicholas Thurlby, a Naperville real estate agent and former Honey Bear, whose three children all boast Cathy Core and her husband Joe Core as their godparents. “The lives she’s impacted — you can’t count the numbers.”

Inducted into the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame last September before a crowd packed with cheering, former Honey Bears, Core also was in charge of the Chicago Bulls Luvabulls squad for 29 years until her retirement in 2013. She’s toured the globe with the Luvabulls, directed a host of other dance groups with Chicago’s professional sports teams, run camps for kids, and been a key part of many charity events. In the world of sports entertainment, she’d done everything, except make good on one girlhood dream.

“I always wanted to be a cheerleader,” Core says, “but the nuns decided differently.”

One of the nuns teaching at her high school in her hometown of Jersey City, N.J., wanted her to sing with the glee club instead of being a cheerleader, Core says. Core says just minutes before cheerleader tryouts, the nun sent Core to a closet to get supplies. Somehow, the door locked, and by the time Core was freed, she was too late for cheerleader tryouts.

Determined to scratch her cheerleading itch, Core coached the younger girls’ cheerleader squad at her school. Planning to study nursing after graduating from high school, Core moved into the Sisters of Charity convent in Morristown, N.J. But that wasn’t her calling. So she took a job as an office manager in the fledgling computer department at Pace University in New York, where she ended up coaching the university cheerleading squad.

She grew up on Bidwell Avenue in Jersey City, just a couple of blocks from her future husband, and they went to the same grade school and same Sacred Heart Catholic Church. But they didn’t meet until a young adults dance at their church.

A graduate of Seton Hall University, where he joined the ROTC, Joe was inducted into the Army in 1966, married Cathy on Feb. 4, 1967, and was assigned to duty for a year in Hawaii, where his bride picked up a few dance moves from her hula lessons. After a year in Vietnam, where he was awarded many medals, including a Bronze Star, Capt. Joe Core came home and started a career as a federal agent with the Treasury Department. The couple bought their home in Wheaton when he was transferred to Chicago in 1974. Reluctant to leave New Jersey, Cathy Core decided to make the best of things at her new home. She volunteered as the cheerleading coach for young girls at St. James the Apostle School in Glen Ellyn, and took a job at a teachers’ credit union in Westchester.

The Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders already had become a national institution when Chicago Bears owner George Halas decided his team should have “dancing girls.” A failed and quickly forgotten experiment with the Bear Essentials, a group of cheerleaders wearing long skirts and knee socks that revealed less skin than the players’ uniforms, led Bears brass to ask around the office for a real cheerleader coach. One woman suggested the cheerleader coach at her church’s school, and Bears General Manager Jim Finks gave Core a call.

“I thought it was someone playing a joke on me, so I laughed and told him I was Shirley Temple,” remembers Core, who didn’t recognize the names of Halas or Finks.

“The next day I answered the phone at the credit union and the voice on the other end said, ‘Shirley, this is Jim Finks. Can we talk?'” Core says.

She was never a cheerleader and her only formal dance lessons were in Irish step-dancing, but Core immediately found success with the Honey Bears as the squad’s director and choreographer.

“I’d do a lot of stuff at home. I’d have the music blasting and be sweating my buns off,” says Core, who admits to learning from her pupils. “I would listen to them. My talent was that I could see the big picture. I could tell right away if it was going to work.”

The first professional football game she attended, Core was on the sidelines directing a squad of 28 Honey Bears adorned in white “hot pants” and a vest that covered their midriffs and laced in the front. “When the girls first hit the field, the fans went crazy,” she remembers.

So did Bears management. At halftime, Core was given a note complaining that the dancers were showing too much cleavage, so Core had them lace up the front. When the Honey Bears came out for the second half with a more modest look, Core got a phone call on the sideline from Finks.

“What are you doing? The girls look like a bunch of nuns out there,” he told her.

“Jim won out,” says Core, who notes that the Honey Bears never showed as much skin as the cheerleading crews in Dallas or Miami. Those original members were required to be full-time students or have jobs. They were paid $5 a game that first season, but were in demand all year for personal appearances.

“I never thought the girls were being exploited. They were always treated with the utmost respect,” Core says, who eventually formed C.C. Company with her husband, and hired choreographers. “They (the Honey Bears) took great pride in their appearance, the way they handled themselves, their education, their talent.”

Making sure that the women adhered to strict behavior codes, including no fraternizing with the players, Core remembers firing a couple of Honey Bears for posing nude in magazines, and another for building a relationship with a player. She ran a tight ship.

“You learned how to be young women,” says Thurlby, who remembers being “scared to death” of doing something that would require a reprimand from Core.

“I still can’t chew gum,” says Kopp-Jones, recalling Core’s ban on gum.

After Halas died, the team soured on the Honey Bears. Their last game was Super Bowl XX on Jan. 26, 1986, in New Orleans.

“If you’re going out, that’s a great way to go out,” Core says. “And they haven’t won a Super Bowl since, I might add. The curse of the Honey Bears.”

Core took over the Luvabulls in 1984, and continued with the squad through the Michael Jordan years and six championships. She and her husband had Jordan sign a few items during the years, including a photo from his rookie season, just in case Jordan became famous someday. Jordan assured them he would.

In traveling around the world with the Luvabulls and other groups, the Cores became involved in A New Day Cambodia, a charity begun by sports photographer Bill Smith and his wife, Lauren. For the past decade, the Cores have been frequent visitors, financial and emotional supporters, and active “parents” for Samong, now 20, and her brother, Pov, 18.

“That’s been wonderful,” Joe Core says, noting so many of their friendships, travels and joys have grown out of the career that began when Cathy Core agreed to be the “Ma Bear” for the Honey Bears.

“I never thought I could tell you anything about football, and now I yell at (Bears quarterback Jay) Cutler like everybody else,” she says, adding that she’d like to see the Honey Bears revived. “I think the team needs a little something-something now.”

Core has gotten more from her career than she ever imagined.

“It’s phenomenal,” Cathy Core says of the relationships she and her husband have built. “Having these women in our lives has been the icing on the cake.”

Pro Bowl Cheerleaders Poster Photoshoot

All 25 Pro Bowl Cheerleaders gathered at the Phoenix Marriott Tempe at The Buttes for the annual Pro Bowl Cheerleader Poster Photoshoot.

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Tampa Bay Buccaneer Cheerleaders at The Gasparilla Races

I ran into the Buccaneers Cheerleaders as they were out greeting fans at the Tampa Gasparilla races. Auditions start March 22nd.

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Stephanie, Baranese, Chloe and Lacy

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[Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders]

 

Photo of the Day – February 23

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Mariah of the Milwaukee Bucks Dancers at Open Practice on Thursday night

Patriots Cheerleaders Host Open Auditions on February 28th

The Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots Cheerleaders will hold open auditions for the 2015 squad on Saturday, Feb. 28, at the John J. Ahern Middle School in Foxborough, Mass.

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The Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots Cheerleaders will hold open auditions for the 2015 squad on Saturday, Feb. 28, at the John J. Ahern Middle School in Foxborough, Mass. Registration begins at 10 a.m. Last year’s team included an aspiring biomedical engineer, a physical therapist and a psychology and neuroscience professor, as well as an accountant, a dentist and a social worker.

Women who are at least 18 years old and have a high school diploma or GED are invited to audition. Candidates must first complete an online application via the Gillette Stadium website. The auditions will take place at the John J. Ahern Middle School, 111 Mechanic St., Foxborough, Mass. Candidates will be taught choreographed dance routines and will be given an opportunity to perform a freestyle combination. They will be judged on dance ability, showmanship, image and level of physical fitness. Judges will narrow the field to 40-plus participants to be invited back for final auditions on Saturday, March 14. A more detailed description of the audition process can be found at www.patriots.com/cheerleaders.

The 2015 Patriots Cheerleading Squad will be comprised of approximately 28 members. The team rehearses twice a week and performs at all Patriots home games. In addition to performing in front of nearly 70,000 fans, a spot on the squad can provide some exciting perks. The cheerleaders will travel to the Dominican Republic in June for their annual calendar and video shoot, and Patriots Cheerleaders have visited deployed military troops in more than 25 countries. During their recent trip to Arizona for Super Bowl XLIX, Patriots Cheerleaders appeared on “Access Hollywood,” “Good Morning America” and NBC’s “Today Show.” The squad has also appeared on “Entertainment Tonight,” E!, “Inside Edition” and Fox News in addition to making regular appearances on local television. Patriots Cheerleaders have also been featured in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition, Maxim and Muscle and Fitness

Pro Bowl Cheerleaders at the Play 60 Event

During Pro Bowl week, some of the Pro Bowl Cheerleaders participated in the NFL PLAY 60 youth fitness challenge and cheerleader clinic at Luke Elementary School.

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Photo of the Day – February 20

A Pair of Charlotte Lady Cats