Where do we begin with this week’s NFL cheerleader gallery on SportsIllustrated.com? There was a lot going on last weekend. The Bucs and Pats Cheerleaders were in London. Back here in the States, there were all kinds of specialty performances for Halloween, Military Awareness Day, and Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This week’s gallery includes teams from the Bengals, Chiefs, Dolphins, Buccaneers, Patriots, Texans, Rams, and Panthers (who debuted a new look on the field.) Click here to go there now.
It will be so weird next week, when everything is back to normal.
There are loads of new photos from week 7 on NFL.com. This week, they have the Rams, Raiders, Cowboys, Bucs, Jets, Texans, Chiefs, Dolphins, and Redskins Cheerleaders. It was a fun week, with special performances for Military Awareness Day, Halloween, and Breast Cancer Awareness month. Click here and have a look.
This week, the NFL cheerleader gallery on SportsIllustrated.com features the Titans, Bills, Panthers, Eagles, Ravens, Chiefs, and Rams. Click here to go there now!
The new collection of NFL cheerleader photos on SportsIllustrated.com features the Texans Cheerleaders, Broncos Cheerleaders, Patriots Cheerleaders, Saintsations, Redskins Cheerleaders, Dolphins Cheerleaders, Chiefs Cheerleaders, and the ROAR of the Jacksonville Jaguars. Click here to go there now.
The Chiefs have started posting photos from this season. So far, they’re in the regular photo section, not the special cheerleader photo section. You can see the first batch here.
While you’re at it, check out those new white uniforms. It looks like maybe they are working with the same company that did the Dolphins outfits. I guess fringe is the next big things in costume design!
Topps trading card company has released their 2009 NFL trading cards. This year, they’ve decided to include special edition cheerleader cards in the set. Each card shows an action photo of a Chiefs, Dolphins, Jaguars, or Ravens cheerleader on the field. I have no idea what method was used to select the teams and cheerleaders for the cards.
There are 15 cheerleader cards total. Each pack of 50 football cards includes one cheerleader card. In other words, you’d have to buy a lot of cards to get the complete set of cheerleaders. However, several sellers on amazon and ebay are selling just the cheerleader cards on their own. If you’re looking to collect the full set of cheerleader cards, or if you were a cheerleader on one of those teams last year and want to buy your own card, make sure you check those two sites.
The Sports Illustrated NFL Cheerleader gallery is back for the 2009-10 season. The first gallery of the year includes Cheerleaders from the Miami Dolphins, Baltimore Ravens, San Diego Chargers, Buffalo Bills, New York Jets, Tennessee Titans, Kansas City Chiefs, and Indianapolis Colts. Click here to go there now.
Aug. 11, 2009
Denise Evans is an athlete.
She averages 10 hours a week in training. In a gym in her Kansas City, North, home, she exercises, lifts weights and stretches. Weekly hot yoga and ballet classes are part of her regimen.
By all accounts, the former Kansas City Chiefs cheerleader is in good physical shape. She can, for example, run 3½ miles without stopping.
But that run is a walk in the park compared to a 10-minute round on the dance floor.
“Dance is twice as hard,” said Evans, 42. “It requires intense bursts of energy – in heels, and smiling.”
Evans is competing in the Heart of America Ballroom DanceSport Championships this weekend in Kansas City. Some 300 dancers have registered to participate in different categories during the three-day competition.
Evans and her dance partner, Gert Roslender of Indianapolis, are entered in the pro-am international open standard division of ballroom dancing. Roslender is a professional dance instructor and Evans is an amateur.
On Saturday, they will fox-trot, waltz, tango, quickstep and Viennese waltz at three different times: 11:44 a.m., 12:18 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. In each 10-minute round, they will perform all five dances.
“Denise is the epitome of what ballroom dancing should be,” said Carmelita Beets, who saw Evans dance at last year’s event. “She embodies the heart and soul of physical movement and music coming together as an art form.”
Beets is a retired ballroom dance instructor and owns the Midwest Institute of Natural Healing in Kansas City, North.
To spectators like Beets, the dancers are a picture of elegance: men in tuxedoes and women in ballgowns swirling gracefully around the floor.
“The artistic, aesthetic part is visual,” said Angela Prince, national public relations director for USA Dance, the national governing body for DanceSport in the United States.
What the audience doesn’t see, Prince said, is the demanding discipline involved in reaching the high levels of athletic proficiency required to meet the rigors of competitive dance.
Roslender and Evans have been practicing about two years. Evans flies to Indianapolis about every other week for a four-hour session. On her return flight, Evans said, she feels both empty and full: “I am empty of stress and tension and my spirit is filled up.”
Evans returned to dancing after a seven-year break. In 2000, she won the national championship in the open pro-am international standard. Evans then took time off to write a book and give birth to a daughter.
She began competitive dancing again at the urging of her husband, who wanted their 5-year-old daughter to see her mother perform.
So, in 2007, Evans returned to the dance floor and to her roots.
She has been dancing since she was 6 years old when her grandfather taught her how to cha-cha. At the time, he owned a dance studio in Kansas City, Kan. Evans’ parents, LeRoy and Ginny Walters, are still in the dance business and are sponsoring the event in Kansas City.
While ability and agility are in her favor, there are some things dancers can’t control no matter how talented or how much time they’ve invested in perfecting their art. The music, the dance floor and the number of couples on the floor vary.
“We have no idea what songs we’ll have to dance to,” Evans said. “We know only that it will be a waltz or whatever dance we’re on.”
In addition, a couple must maneuver – with an appearance of ease – through the traffic on the dance floor, and the dancers must adjust to the surface of the floor. Floors that aren’t slick, Evans said, aren’t as “fast” and require different muscles.
Evans and Roslender have two more contests this year: Las Vegas on Aug. 22 and the national championships in Orlando, Fla., on Sept. 11.
Then, Evans said, she plans to retire from competition. But she isn’t hanging up her shoes.
“One thing I know for sure now is that dance will always be a part of my life,” she said.
All Chiefs fans are invited to an exclusive evening with the Chiefs Cheerleaders as they officially unveil the 2010 Chiefs Cheerleader Swimsuit Calendar at McCoy’s in Westport on Wednesday, July 29th. This Chiefs Cheerleader Calendar Premiere Party event kicks off at 8:00 PM with Jack FM radio personality Nycki Pace serving as mistress of ceremonies. Admission is free and all ages are welcome.
Members of the Chiefs Cheerleaders will be conducting special performances throughout the evening. For the first time, fans will also have the opportunity to purchase the brand new 16-month 2010 Chiefs Cheerleader Calendar and have it personally signed by one of their favorite Chiefs Cheerleaders.
Fans will be able to enjoy food and drink specials all evening at McCoy’s. Conveniently located at the corner of Westport Road and Pennsylvania, McCoy’s will be the hottest spot in Kansas City on Wednesday, July 29th when the Chiefs Cheerleaders host this exclusive event. We’ll see you there!
[Kansas City Chiefs Cheerleaders]
Tandi Ball hired as cheer coach
The University of Idaho Athletics Department, in partnership with the Dean of Students office, has hired Tandi Ball as head coach of the Idaho Spirit Squad.
“Tandi will be a great addition to the Vandal family. She is an energetic, diligent and charismatic individual who has the skills and talents to make the Idaho Spirit Squad excel,” Marketing Director for University of Idaho Athletics Nick Popplewell said.
Ball’s coaching experience includes stints at Washington State University, Western Oregon University and Coffeyville Community College. She also was a diver and cheerleader at the University of Missouri and a cheerleader for the Kansas City Chiefs.
Tandi’s husband, Chris Ball, is the defensive coordinator for the Washington State football team.
“Tandi has been around college athletics most of her life, first as a student-athlete and then as a coach and coach’s wife,” Popplewell said. “This background is critical when working in the university setting; she clearly understands the collegiate atmosphere and environment.
“She has high expectations and shares my vision of a nationally acclaimed program. We are lucky to have a person of Tandi’s caliber running the Idaho Spirit Squad and we expect great things from her in the near future.”
By Victoria Lim
May 18, 2009
ROCHEPORT, Mo. -– From the pigskin to pig breeder, Nancy Shepherd has been hog wild for more than three decades. The transition from being a NFL cheerleader to swine enthusiast may not seem obvious, but to Shepherd, it was natural.
“Being physical and being a pig farmer kind of go together. I was never a prissy girl. I was always a tomboy,” she said of how she blended the sport of cheering to farming.
After being Kansas City Chiefs’ cheerleader, she admits her entry into pig farming happened by accident — “destiny,” she called it. In the ’70s, a neighbor invited her to a pig birthing, where one of the piglets began faltering. Her neighbor was about to “do it in,” Shepherd recalled, so she decided to take it in, instead.
So Roto, as it was called, found a new home. Shepherd borrowed a boar and raised her first litter. She was now in the pig business. She estimates her pigs breed 14 to 21 piglets a year, with customers from as close as Ohio and as far away as California, Oregon and Japan.
“Pigs are very special. They’re verbal. Their sounds mean something,” she said. “They kind of demand you treat them with respect.”
One of Roto’s children — Tulip — had a litter of one: Banjo. To give Tulip the ability to breed again quickly, Shepherd hand-raised Banjo and just like any other mother-child relationship, she was hooked.
She threw birthday parties for Banjo that brought scores of friends together yearly, bearing gifts of birthday cake and the pig’s favorite beverage: Orange Crush soda. A fan club formed — 400 members, at its peak.
Banjo passed when he was 9-and-a-half years old. By then, pig parties were the rage for Shepherd. So, to continue the celebrations, she held a wedding — marrying Yod,the groom dressed in a cummerbund, and Jitterburg, the blushing bride with adorned in a veil, pierced ears and a pedicure. Shepherd served as minister.
“Dearly pig-loved,” her ceremony began. “We are gathered here today to join this gilt and this boar in holy pig-tramony …” as Shepherd’s friends served as best man and matron of honor.
The couple stayed together until Jitterbug died in 2003 of kidney failure. Yoda died in 2006.
Shepherd laughs as she shuffles through wedding photos.
“We just knew how to have fun, is all I know!”
Shepherd now has a big, enclosed shelter for her pigs which she calls the “Piggy Palace.” (watch the video)
As she cares for her brood, she disputes various pig myths and sayings.
“They have no odor whatsoever. Pigs don’t sweat – where did that come from? I don’t know how come policemen are called pigs. I don’t understand that part,” she said.
“Pigs are creatures with lots of intelligence, they’re affectionate, verbal and smart.”
After buyers apply to purchase one of her pigs, she submits applicants to a background check and provides a “how to care for” manual for their new owners, with a warning: “You have to be smarter than your pig, or your pig will train you very well!”
To learn more about Shepherd and her Pig O’ My Heart Potbellies, visit PotBellyPigs.com
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