Student given chance to travel by achieving All-Star cheerleader

Published 5:00 am Monday, June 26, 2006

For Kimbra Smith, a senior cheerleader at Loyd Star, being giventhe chance to travel to London, England, and New York, N.Y., is anopportunity worth seizing.

Smith received All-Star status at a Universal CheerleadersAssociation camp June 2 at Mississippi College in Clinton where thegirls were judged on a variety of skills.

“The girls are chosen on their ability to dance, memorizecheers, posture and overall performance,” said Loyd StarCheerleading Coach Clara Freeman.

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Smith said she stayed up all night working on her routines.

“It takes a lot to get out there, but I kept practicing,” shesaid.

At the UCA cheerleading camp the girls are required to memorizeand perfect a routine that will be critiqued by a panel of judgesto determine rank.

“It’s not like being at a game,” Smith said. “Ms. Clara Freemanis the one that pushed me to try out. She said I needed to come outof my shell,” Smith said.

Along with the honor of being named an All-Star Cheerleader,Smith will attend a cheerleading camp in London during Christmasbreak and will perform at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in NewYork city.

“The Macy’s Day Parade is for team captains, co-captains, andAll-Stars,” Freeman said.

Smith, who is the co-captain for the Loyd Star cheerleadingsquad, will be accompanied by squad captain Carlie Smith and seniorBrittany Grimes to New York.

“We’re not just girls that come out in skirts and try to lookgood. We work hard,” Smith said. “It’s not as easy as it looks.

Freeman said that the girls have been very dedicated to workinghard and putting forth a good effort.

“You have to be willing to learn fast,” Freeman said. “It takesa lot of hard work to promote sharpness, techniques, and then beable to get out there and showcase it.”

Smith will not be alone in her adventures to London and New YorkCity.

” My mom is getting to go,” she said. “We are pretty close, soit will not only be a great experience for me, but also forher.”

Smith’s love for cheering began at an early age and that lovehas only grown.

“You can act crazy and nobody cares,” Smith said. “That’s whatthey expect you to do. That’s what a cheerleader is.”

Smith has been cheering and dancing since kindergarten and plansto continue on into college. I would like to tryout for the Colettedance team at Copiah-Lincoln Community College, she said. Followingher time at Co-Lin, she would like to attend the University ofSouthern Mississippi or Mississippi State University and major infashion design.

After college, Smith’s dream is to open up her own store withclothes, shoes and jewelry but will miss being able to cheer forLoyd Star.

“I’ll miss wearing the red, white and black,” she said. “I’vealways been here and I can’t picture myself going anywhere else.There are great people here who support us.”