Nevada Cheer: Stealing The Spotlight, A Chance to "Perform with the Pack"
Jan 14, 2020 10:17PM
● By Shannon Bonetti
by Shannon Bonetti
Think back to the days as a young girl, dancing around the room, playing with dolls and dressing up in your favorite pink tutu. Now imagine getting to meet a group of real-life princesses ready to share their spirit! That’s the experience for nearly 100 young girls in our community who get to cheer with the Nevada Wolf Pack team in front of thousands of fans every month. “Perform with the Pack started 12 years ago with a camp, then we decided to do it monthly. Community members who love the pack get a chance to perform with us,” said head cheer coach, Kim Anastassatos. It’s a non-competitive and non-traveling program for kids 4 years-of-age through 8th grade.
Each child purchases a uniform package reserving their space on the team for an entire year. “They perform with us at Nevada football, soccer, volleyball, men and women’s basketball games, as well as attend community events throughout the year,” said Kim.
For the participants, it’s a chance to perform along side professional college athletes. To learn routines, develop confidence, coordination and teamwork skills, and for the cheerleaders who lead the program, it’s equally beneficial. “It’s great for the ladies who are studying to get their teaching degrees. They get great experience working with kids and wrangling up a bunch of excited, chanting little ones, plus it allows them to look through the eyes of a child who wants to grow up and be like them.”
Third-year cheerleader, Brook Latos says it’s all about watching the girls grow year after year. “You get to know them on a personal level, so that’s really neat. You can see their dancing, stunt and cheer abilities get better over time, and that’s really rewarding.” Head Instructor, Nevada Senior Lauren Ensor sees it as a chance to share something she’s truly passionate about. “I love it, I volunteered to coach the girls this year because I really enjoy spending time with them. I get to teach them about a sport I care about, and that’s just so awesome.”
The girls also participate in community service projects with the team. From Halloween events to a specialty holiday tea at a local retirement home. “We try to advertise through social media about the program, but it’s really a word of mouth thing,” said Kim. “This year we have a total of 65 kids, next year we’d like to see about 100.” All proceeds from the program help fund Nevada Cheer. “We’re so lucky to have the support from Perform with the Pack. It’s an amazing way to fund our program and keep the money coming in throughout the year.”