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What It Means To Be A Syracuse Crunch Ice Girl

By Katrina Tulloch
Syracuse.com

Syracuse Crunch Ice Girls Ally Panighetti and Sam Cavelli spent two hours mingling with Crunch fans at a pep rally before Friday's game against the Springfield Falcons.

Syracuse Crunch Ice Girls Ally Panighetti and Sam Cavelli spent two hours mingling with Crunch fans at a pep rally before Friday's game against the Springfield Falcons.

Being a Zoom Tan Ice Girl for the Syracuse Crunch hockey team means people will stare at you, but you’ll get used to it.

You’ll be offered phone numbers, love letters and frequent requests to have your photo taken, usually with admiring young girls, teenage guys or older men.

You probably won’t see the hundreds of photos taken of you that end up on private Facebook accounts or on Instagram.

You might be a little cold when you’re not cheering, because those blue and silver spandex uniforms aren’t exactly the warmest outfits for working in an ice rink. At least they don’t bare your midriff anymore, like the old uniforms did.

There will be hard parts, like when you have to ignore the rowdy catcalls of fans who had a bit too many drinks before the game.

There will also be perks, like two free tickets to each game, which you might share with friends, family or significant others. You’ll also get a year of free spray tans from your Zoom Tan sponsor.

You might get gently scolded to come in for more free tans. You’re looking a little pale, after all.

You’ll probably love your job, because you love hockey, the fans, or because you grew up in the Crunch world. The reasons for cheering vary for each Ice Girl, as do their reasons for joining in the first place.

This Year’s Girls

Twelve young women fill the Ice Girls roster this year, ranging from ages 19-26. About six girls work each game, rotating nights based on school schedules and other jobs. Seven Ice Girls worked during the Crunch’s sweeping defeat of the Springfield Falcons on Friday night, which advanced them to the Calder Cup final four.

Last Friday was special. A pep rally was organized by the city at the Everson Plaza across from the hockey arena, with food vendors, live music and games for kids.

At the plaza event, the girls passed out buttons and mingled with fans. One pep rally attendee, Bud Natale, has been attending Crunch games for years. He thinks this year’s Ice Girls are especially great at getting the crowds pumped up.

“I wish all the sports had a group like that,” said Natale, 49. “They’re incredible. You can’t miss them.”

The Ice Queen Routine

The girls sprinkle in to the Crunch stadium about two hours before every game to put on makeup, do their hair and hear their specific jobs for the night.

Kristin Costello became the Ice Girls’ captain (a.k.a. “Captain Crunch”) after one year of cheering on the squad. She describes the team as more promotional than a regular dance team or cheer squad. It’s their job to keep fans interested with free T-shirt tosses and trivia questions.

Costello has plenty of experience redirecting short attention spans. She’s a substitute teacher for first and second graders. She also described herself as a bit timid before joining the Ice Girls.

“Having thousands of people always looking at you, wanting pictures, talking to you about things…all that really opened me up in my personal life,” she said.

After joining the Crunch, Costello became braver and more comfortable talking to strangers. She also became better at conversing and connecting with her students.

Some of the Ice Girls have backgrounds in dance (like Yasmeen Bankole, 19), cheerleading (like Jen Andrews, 19) or are lifelong Crunch fans (like Sam Cavelli, 22). One girl was a Zumba instructor. Another is a waitress. Many are students.

Ally Panighetti, 23, has been going to Crunch games since she was four years old and has been an Ice Girl for four years.

“These people are like my family; they’re not just fans to me,” Panighetti said. “They’ve watched me grow up.”

[Syracuse Crunch Ice Girls]

Ice Ice Baby

Step aside Gangnam Style, the Checkers are kickin’ it old school. A few of the guys on the Charlotte Checkers hockey team (AHL) go together with a few of the Checkmates to rock the mic like a vandal.

AFL Rockford IceHogs Ice Crew

The Rockford IceHogs are looking for highly-motivated candidates to become members of the IceHogs Ice Crew for the 2012-13 season. Candidates should be at least 18 years of age and must commit to a full year of games/events.

The promo team represents the IceHogs at all home games and at various community events during the season.

If you are interested in joining the 2012-13 Ice Crew and would like more information, please click here.

[Ice Hogs Ice Crew on Facebook]

Photo of the Day – October 9

A Pair of Charlotte Checkers Checkmates

Support Team Dolla Dolla Bills and Team London

The Chatlotte LadyCats and Charlotte CheckMates are teaming up for a huge Pink Carpet Event on September 29th.

The squads are raising money for their Race for the Cure teams, Team Dolla Dolla Bills and Team London.

Fans can attend the Pink Carpet Event on September 29th and donate to the teams or donate online.

[Team London]

[Team Dolla Dolla Bills]

[Charlotte LadyCats]

[Charlotte CheckMates]

Presenting Your 2012-13 Rampage Ice Girls

San Antonio Rampage
Sept. 7, 2012

More than 50 young women were in attendance at Blast Fitness on Sunday vying for a spot on the 2012-13 Ice Girls squad. In the end, 10 young women were selected to represent the Rampage and Spurs Sports and Entertainment as this season’s Ice Girls.

To view the pictures, click here!

The afternoon of auditions began with the dancers learning a one-minute dance combination taught by Ice Girls Choreographer Raquel Garcia. The girls then performed the routine in front of a panel of judges in small groups.

Eighteen finalists were selected by the judges and a round of individual interviews followed. After deliberating, the judges selected the 10 young women for this year’s Ice Girls squad.

Two of the girls, Blake and Heather, have been on the Ice Girls before, while three are currently on the Silver Stars (WNBA) Star Squad – Blake, Heather and Michelle.

“We had a great turnout and a lot of very talented girls this year,” said Garcia. “The decisions were tough, but I’m confident we’ve picked a fantastic team of Ice Girls to represent the Rampage and Spurs Sports and Entertainment.”

The Ice Girls will perform at select San Antonio Rampage home games and represent the team at community events around the Alamo City.

Houston Aero Dynamics Auditions

The Areo Dyamics, the Dance Team for the AHL Houston Aeros held their auditions on the last Saturday in August.

After three rounds of cuts the field was narrowed from 55 to 23 young ladies who would return during the week for personal interviews.

This past Thursday the Aeros announced on Thursday the 2012-13 Aero Dynamics. The team consists of 11 new faces and one returnee. Aside from fan-interaction at games, the Aero Dynamics will also make numerous community and charity-related appearances throughout the 2012-13 season.

Look for the Aero Dynamics at the Toyota Center at home opener on on Saturday, Oct. 13, at 7:05 p.m. with the Charlotte Checkers at the Toyota Center. The game will commemorate the 40th anniversary of the first Aeros game played by the World Hockey Association (WHA) team in 1972.

[Areo Dynamics Auditions Gallery]

[Aero Dynamics on Facebook]

Houston AeroDynamics Auditions Are August 25th

Larry North Fitness
1200 McKinney, Suite 444
Houston, TX 77010

Registration: 9am
Auditions: 10am

[Complete Registration Information and Application]

[AeroDynamics on Facebook]

Texas Ice Girl Auditions Are This Saturday

[Texas Ice Girls Auditions]

Audition for the Texas Stars Ice Girls

Think you have what it takes? Click below for details!

Video: San Antonio Rampage Ice Girls

What I really want to know is who is that dude kneeling in the background?

Texas Stars Ice Girls audition photos

Patrick Lane
Hill Country News
July 19, 2011

The first round of auditions for the 2011-2012 Texas Stars Ice Girls was held on Saturday, July 17.

Ice Girls Coordinator Kristin Ditto said 11 ladies were selected to advance into finals week with the final squad announcement later this week.

Stay tuned for the FINAL photo of the new Ice Girls team which will be performing this hockey season at Cedar Park Center.

Checkmate Auditions Set For August 14th

2011-12 Checkmate Auditions begin August 14th at Extreme Ice Center in Indian Trail, N.C.

The Charlotte Checkers are looking for highly motivated candidates to become part of their interactive cheer team. Candidates should be at least 18 years of age, must commit to a full year of rehearsals, games, (including preseason and playoffs) and be prepared to support the Checkers in their second American Hockey League season!

The schedule is as follows:

Sunday, August 14th – Preliminary Auditions at Extreme Ice Center, Indian Trial, NC
Registrations at 11 a.m. auditions noon-5 p.m.

Those who advance past Sunday prelims will be asked to continue through “finals week.”

MUST be available Monday, August 15th and Tuesday, August 16th from 7-10 p.m. for finalists rehearsals. MUST be available for a 30 minute business interview at Checkers main office (located in downtown Charlotte) on Monday (8/15) or Tuesday (8/16) afternoon. Final auditions will be held at XIC on Wednesday (8/17) from 6-8 p.m.

All candidates must arrive at auditions wearing midriff top and long, fitted dance pants. If you can ice skate please come with skates to showcase skating ability. If you are not yet a skater, please be prepared to learn skating techniques before the start of the Checkers season.

Please pre-register by sending your name and contact information to checkmates@gocheckers.com.

Come be part of the most exciting sports team in town!

Texas Stars Ice Girls Auditions are July 16th

[Texas Stars Ice Girls]

Audition Alert for Houston-Area Dancers!

Audition for the AHL Houston Aeros dance team, the Aero Dynamics!

The team is hosting two prep classes in advance of the auditions.

AeroDynamics Prep Classes
July 16th and July 23rd
Both days will be from 1pm-3pm
$25 each class.
Please RSVP to Aero Dynamic Dance Director/Choreographer – Kirstin-Alys
www.redsatindp.net / (281)-288-4599 / red_satin_dp@yahoo.com

Click here for additional details!