Shamrock Classic raises money for cheer scholarship
Feb 06, 2020 01:26PM
● By Greg James
Last season, Ashley Gillam from Copper Hills was awarded the inaugural Ashley Levie cheer scholarship. She used the money toward her school expenses. (Photo courtesy Rikki Rindlisbacher)
By Greg James | [email protected]
Honoring a long-time friend became important to Hunter High cheer coach Rikki Rindlisbacher the day she got the job. A cheerleading competition has become an avenue for her to help others attain their goals.
“Six years ago my best friend passed away unexpectedly,” Rindlisbacher said. “She was a dance teacher and I got my position here at Hunter that same day. We met through dance and I felt cheer became cathartic for me to work through her loss.”
Hunter High School will host the second annual Shamrock Classic as a fundraiser for their cheer team and scholarship award.
The classic will be held March 14 at Hunter High School. Participating teams include high school, junior high, youth and private cheer clubs. Last season, the competition included West, Copper Hills and Hunter High schools and three private programs.
A percentage of profits raised at the event are used to fund the Ashley Levie Scholarship fund. Last season, a $1,000 scholarship was awarded to former Copper Hills Cheerleader Ashley Gillam. She used the money toward school expenses.
The scholarship continues Levie’s legacy of assisting others by helping deserving students achieve their college and career goals.
“We thought hosting a competition as a program was a good fundraiser. There are not a lot of local competitions and they can be expensive. We thought the competition would be a good way to raise money for our team and for a legacy scholarship to honor my friend,” Rindlisbacher said.
Any senior cheerleader is eligible to apply. Their team does not need to participate in the competition. Last season, Rindlisbacher said she felt cheerleaders were not applying for scholarships like they should have.
“We opened up so that if your team can’t come, but you still want to apply they can. We are offering a solo to the cheerleader to showcase their skills. I think some did not apply last year just because they felt like they would not get chosen. Scholarships are a thing, there is a lot of money out there,” Rindlisbacher said.
The deadline for scholarship applications is Feb. 15. The application includes, transcripts, two letters of recommendation and an essay. If their team is participating in the classic they perform with the team as part of the application.
“We look big at service and grades. What things have they done in the community. Ashley was always helping other people and so we want to find a kiddo that is involved in more areas than just their grades,” Rindlisbacher said. “Cheerleaders are always helping in food drives or suicide prevention walks. They represent their school.”
The Classic is mainly used as a fundraiser for Hunter cheer expenses.
Hunter won its region title and will compete for the state championship Jan. 25 (after press deadline). They compete in the 6A timeout/sideline division. Their division focuses on crowd involvement and excitement. The team consists of 26 cheerleaders including two boys.
“Our cheerleaders are really talented and hardworking. They have super good attitudes, and I can tell they want to do a lot. We have reached some really high skills. We have not had that in years past, things like switch ups to extensions and hitting tik toks, cool stuff you see on the ESPN channel,” Rindlisbacher said.
The application and more information can be found by contacting Hunter High School or visiting hunterhighcheer.blogspot.com.