AH-MA-ZING, might be an understatement for the 28th Annual Cheer Competition sponsored by DTE Energy! The cheers, the outfits, the spirits were surely a sight to see! The 2014 Cheer competition will not soon be forgotten.
This year’s Cheer competition took place at Callahan Hall in Detroit MI. Although doors opened up for the event at 9 am, people began to arrive at 6 am in anticipation for this coveted event. Grandmother of a cheerleader for the West 7 Rams, Deloris White said, “We have been coming to these for years! We love it. It gives these girls something positive to do.” The Detroit PAL cheer competition has been around for over 25 years and has no plan of slowing down. Many of those in attendance are regulars at the event. Rochelle Robinson stated, “I have been coming to these for years. I use to cheer so I love to come out and see what these girls are going to show us.”
In a time and age where young girls can be seen emulating reality TV stars that act in questionable ways, this competition is a breath of fresh air. To see predominately Black young girls cheering and supporting one another not only rips apart stereotypes, it is also refreshing. Al Thomas, father of a cheerleader for the Raiders said, “I’m so proud of her. So many young girls are out there being raunchy and acting grown. But this allows the girls to be girls.” Another father, Demetrius McNeely shared that sentiment, “I’m here to support my niece, but when my daughter is old enough she will be a cheerleader for PAL. It is such a positive outlet. It teaches them sisterhood and allows them to exercise.” Sisterhood is a fitting word to describe what takes place not only at the competition, but within the cheerleading program. These young ladies have an opportunity to gain friendships that can and do last for a life time.
West 7 Rams cheerleader Jada Mitchell exclaimed, “I have so many new friends now. We go skating and to the movies together. I love it.” This attitude could be seen throughout the day, though the hugs, pats on the back and smiles that were shared. Not to mention that when one team completed their routine, the other cheer teams chants and cheers for them.
This year’s competition began with the F and D team cheering. That was followed by the C, then B, and finally A team. And this year each team surely brought their A game! As this year’s judging was closer than ever. The results were:
Level I C-Team Winners Level II C-Team Winners
1st Place – Jets 1st Place – Rams
2nd Place – Raiders 2nd Place – Spartans
3rd Place – Steelers 3rd Place – Cougars
4th Place – Gators 4th Place – Cowboys
Level I B-Team Winners Level II B-Team Winners
1st Place – Cowboys 1st Place – Rams
2nd Place – Giants 2nd Place – Cougars
3rd Place – Steelers 3rd Place – Spartans
4th Place – Jayhawks 4th Place – Dragons
Level I A-Team Level II A-Team Winners
1st Place – Jets 1st Place – Falcons
2nd Place – Raiders 2nd Place – Cougars
3rd Place – Giants 3rd Place – Steelers
4th Place – Broncos 4th Place – Rams
Detroit PAL would like to thank DTE Energy for sponsoring this years competition as well as the coaches, staff and beautiful young ladies for putting on an unforgettable competition.
To view more pictures visit our Flickr page!