Serving Roseau County for over 100 Years - The Official Roseau County Newspaper

BRING IN THE CHEER

by Jessica Jones

Joyful chanting, pom poms shaking, Roseau cheer is in the making! It's been far too long since Roseau has had cheerleading, and it currently is not included in the Roseau High School list of athletics available to join. This just won't do!

Roseau has a great actively involved community with wonderful school spirit, but the presence of cheerleaders at games and activities just elevates positive energy even more. Roseau deserves the extra attention, especially with all of its' proud history, so why is there no cheerleading?

Cheer ghosts of the past are pictured on the school digital yearbook as far back as 1947! Now it's not exactly sure when the program was terminated or why, perhaps it was a lack of enrollment, or perhaps it was a funding issue that put it on the cutting block. Either way, it is a shame as the most recent year cheer is pictured in the digital yearbook was 2005, that's 18-19 years ago! There were no cheer pictures in the 2006 yearbook and so the hunt stopped after that...apologies if the information is flawed, the 2007 to the present day yearbooks weren't looked through.

"As cheer is not currently offered as a Roseau school sport we've decided to create it on our own," says Head Cheer Coach Jessica. Monday, November 27, 2023, marked the first meeting, and first day of practice. The head coach was so surprisingly pleased that the turnout was so large. "We already had a decent list. I had checked the sign up a few times since it first went live right before Thanksgiving break, checked it again the next morning, and then again at the end of the school day Monday, right before practice, and then I got so excited...there were so many girls on the list!" exclaimed the coach. "To my added surprise there were even a few girls that showed up that still needed to be added to the list." Meanwhile the coach was thinking, "this is it, this is for real, and what a great thing this is going to be!" This year cheer will be done in a unique fashion due to logistics.

First a small survey went out to see how much interest there was in the event a cheer team was to be created. The outcome of this was great, proving there are many cheerleaders at heart of all ages wishing cheer was back in Roseau. Due to this, an eager student and a couple determined moms continued the process! Brainstorming ideas, such as where, when, and how, were just some of it. Fortunately, the idea overall was warmly embraced by all. Perhaps Roseau High School will need to reconsider adding cheer back to the docket in the years to follow, as there was 19+ in attendance on day 1! Registration is currently open so that number could still grow even more, and how exciting for Roseau!

The new Roseau Cheer Team registration is being run through Roseau Community Ed open for 7-12th graders. Registration is free, however, there will be a cost at the responsibility of each participant for matching cheer uniforms head to toe, including cheer sneakers, and pom poms. This team is going to not only be a great addition to the community but also look great! "If we're going to do this we need to do this right, it needs to be a Top-Notch program," says the coach. There are no try-outs this season, registration is open to all, but getting the matching uniform is required to be on the team. This is quite the deal, so hurry up and sign up if you'd like to join in the fun! For now, due to funding, all of the Cheer Teams appearances will be at Roseau home games and activities, transportation to and from is each participant's own responsibility.

There are currently many moving parts in the planning of this team. The Roseau High School has graciously donated a space to use for regular practice 3 days a week for 1.5 hours a day. This cheer team has a lot of training ahead of them as they are starting from scratch! Practices will start with stretching and athletic conditioning to not only get the blood pumping but also to get them in prime physical condition. The team will not be doing any tumbling or stunting just yet, but they have plans to add that in the future as they progress as a team. The conditioning will help with this transition. After the stretching and conditioning comes the fun stuff, learning the cheers. Each cheer is taught piece by piece and then put back together a little at a time to make it easier to follow. Odessa, the cheer captain, oversees this and she does an excellent job! She was in competitive cheer before she relocated to Roseau. (Some of you may know Odessa from figure skating/ice performance and ice coaching.)

Once the team has been fully uniformed and has a good-sized portfolio of well-prepared cheers, they will look at home game/activity schedules of all sports and plan what ones work for the team to attend. (The coach is very understanding of participants that join, that may simultaneously be in other activities, and with that may not be able to appear at 100% of the Cheer Team sessions; if they communicate with her and give 100% when they can attend.)

The cheer coach plans to have the team learn and grow together and is making a wish list as they think of things they would like beyond the required uniform. One example of wish list items would be matching green and white Roseau crocheted style mittens for when the team is cheering at an event in the cold, a long Roseau colors blanket or better yet, a few blankets to put across the bleachers at an ice rink, and warm up suits, (track pants and jacket). Some pieces of the coaches' planning will be figured out as they grow, and with that of course more items added to the team wish list. Wouldn't it be great if a Roseau school sport made it to State and the Roseau Cheer Team was able to raise enough money to attend to cheer them on!?! These are all things being brainstormed by the Roseau Cheer Team. There will probably be some fundraising done in the future in lieu of the already growing wish list, but if you ever want to make a donation of any kind, have questions or recommendations, feel free to contact the head coach Jessica at 218-403-1449. (With the exception of the practice space graciously provided, there is no school funding as it is currently not one of Roseau's school sports.)

The head coach would like to thank Melinda for helping with some of the techy tasks such as QR code surveys, beautiful flyers, and anything yet to come. Thank you, Atreyu, for help with creating and printing documents, and for future music mixing and techy needs. A big thank you to the new High school principal and office staff (Mattea), working out a regular practice space, continued correspondence, updating the sign up and anything else. Thank you, Odessa, for teaching and mentoring this team. Thank you to the community, and the athletic director for embracing the idea, the parents for their continued support and most of all the cheerleaders for taking this journey! Without you, this would not happen!!!

The head coach hopes to have guest appearances by past Roseau cheer alumni to break down and teach the original school cheer, and/or some of the cheers they remember for the various sports. If you happen to be one of the past cheer alumni and would like to volunteer, just use the head coaches number listed above and schedule an appearance, or two. The team would love it, and appreciate it, and you could revel in nostalgic joy. We have included a few screenshots of the past cheer pictures from the digital yearbook at the High School. Just look at how the cheer uniforms have changed through the years!

The exact date of when the new Roseau Cheer Team will make its first debut in public is still unknown, but by the looks of their first practice, it won't be too long! It was such a wonderful thing, they were all working together so well, all fully engaged in the training, and most importantly happy to be there, not to mention they picked up on the first two cheers taught really quickly!

The registration will need to close at some point, but for now it is still open so tell your friends and family about it, and if this sounds like an amazing and fun adventure to you... get yourself signed up now, it only takes a couple of minutes! Bring in the cheer with the Roseau Cheer Team!

 

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