Pats get good cheer

FOXBORO – It is so exciting to have three local girls attending the New England Patriots Junior cheerleading program this year.
Melanie Burek, of Montgomery, and Westfield residents Paige Sanders and Tori Szczepanek are Junior Patriots Cheerleaders.
These three cheerleaders each attend Westfield schools and are members of the Westfield Youth Football cheerleading squad.
Szczepanek, Sanders, and Burek have already attended two cheer/dance clinics instructed by the New England Patriots cheerleaders.

From left to right, are local "Patriots" and youth cheerleaders Paige Sanders, Tori Szczepanek and Melanie Burek. (Submitted photo)

From left to right, are local “Patriots” and youth cheerleaders Paige Sanders, Tori Szczepanek and Melanie Burek. (Submitted photo)

These clinics involved rotations in small groups featuring important elements of cheerleading including technique, jumps, stunting, dance, cheer, teamwork, fitness and tumbling.
On May 2, these girls entered the Dana Farber Field House in Foxboro to register and receive their Junior Patriots cheerleaders outfit. More than three hundred girls were present for this clinic.
Another thing these girls began learning that day was the routine that they will be performing at the first preseason game on August 13 when the New England Patriots host the Green Bay Packers.
The highlight for the girls that day was eating lunch with the Patriots cheerleaders and having this small group interaction with their mentors.
The parents had the opportunity to participate in an exercise session with Andy Berler, the Patriots cheerleaders personal trainer and creator of BMAX.
During the lunch break, the Patriots cheerleaders performed some of their sideline routines for added entertainment.
The next session was held May 10 in Gillette Stadium in Foxboro. This was such an exciting day for these three young ladies. The schedule for the day was similar to the first clinic but this time the girls were on the actual field that the New England Patriots play on.
It was an impressive sight to see the girls complete the performance routine
and cover the entire field.
Also, Pat the Patriot, the mascot of the New England Patriots, made an appearance and danced, tumbled and exercised with the Jr. Patriots cheerleaders.
Over the next few months, the girls have been encouraged to rehearse the performance routine on their own. There will be
one more dance rehearsal in Foxboro on August 1.
The girls will also have opportunities to participate with the New England Patriots Cheerleaders in their fifth season of “Celebrate Volunteerism” campaign, spreading values of community service and charitable donation.
The Patriots Cheerleaders hope to inspire and teach the junior cheerleaders about the importance of giving back and using their role in the sport to be “leaders” in their communities to make a difference.
The junior cheerleaders will be asked to make various appearances with the
Patriots Cheerleaders throughout the season, one of which will be on July 3
at the Harvard Pilgrim Finish at the 50 5/10K.

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