COLD LAKE – Fundraising efforts are underway for two Premier Academy Bonnyville teams who will be competing in national and international championship competitions in 2023.
Before February of 2023 rolls around, Premier Academy hopes to raise $110,000 to cover the cost of flights and accommodation for team members of Xplosion and Dynamite travelling to compete.
So far, teams have only covered the costs of registration fees for the competitions.
Xplosion, which is made up of 25 athletes between the ages of 10 and 16, earned a bid to compete at Allstar World Championships in April for their performance at the Take Flight Cheer Competition held in Cold Lake.
The Allstar World event will take place in Orlando, Florida, from May 4-7.
In 2020, Xplosion had won a bid to compete at the Canadian Finals in Niagara Falls, but two weeks away from the event taking place, the COVID-19 pandemic caused the event’s cancellation.
“They unfortunately lost that opportunity to go and so that was really devastating for them,” said Melissa Kirkendall, owner and coach of Premier Academy.
Despite the challenges and missed opportunities, over the last two years Xplosion athletes have continued to train and even found ways to practice while remaining socially distanced during tightened public health measures.
“They have worked extremely hard and really earned that that bid to go to Orlando for Worlds, and so they are extremely excited.”
At the Take Flight Competition, Xplosion was the highest scoring Level 2 team at the competition and finished as the highest scoring team overall, winning the title of Grand Champions for that competition.
While team Xplosion will be heading south to compete next year, team Dynamite will be heading east.
Dynamite is registered to compete at the Canadian All-Star Nationals in Niagara Falls, Ont., from April 14-17. Teams aren’t required to qualify for Nationals, however, for cheer teams to make it to the Canadian Finals they must qualify at the national event.
Team Dynamite is made up of 14 kids from ages eight to 12 years old.
For the athletes to attend the national event, without adding any financial burden on their families, they must work together to raise $30,000 for the trip. Travelling even further away, team Xplosion will have to raise $80,000.
RibFest creates fundraising opportunity
With support from event organizers, teams Xplosion and Dynamite are selling table packages for RibFest’s Kick-off Barbecue on Friday July 8, in Cold Lake.
The eight-person table package includes a full meal deal and a complimentary drink ticket for $295.
Team members will also be selling pop and water from Friday to Sunday at RibFest’s three-day event.
Over the summer, Premier Academy cheer members will also be taking part in several other volunteer opportunities in the community to raise money for their trips.