Eagles’ fans were saddened in January 2010 with the death of a Philadelphia icon-Tom Brookshier. I suggest reading his biography on the internet to get the story of his life. I can only add my personal observations. Mr. Brookshier broke his leg in the 8th game of the 1961 season. It was a 16 to 14 victory over the Chicago Bears at Franklin Field. While bringing the Eagles to a 7-1 record, it began a losing trend that would last until 1978, or 17 years. The Eagles went 3-3 in the final six games of 1961 for a 10-4 season. They finished in second place one half game behind the first place New York Giants. No repeat title game in 1961. In 1962, the Philadelphia Eagles finished last at 3-10-1. The Penthouse to the cellar in two years.
During this 17 year drought, Tom Brookshier’s enthusiasm both for the Eagles and for the city itself never wavered. His presence both on CBS and the nightly newscast on WCAU helped sustain fan interest for a consistently losing team. When people saw him on City Line Avenue he would always return the hello and stop and chat. Brookshier had a friendly gregarious manner and just enjoyed people. These impromptu chats kept him aware of what was on people’s minds for the Eagles and the city itself.
As good as he was, Tom Brookshier did not reach his near full potential until teaming with Pat Summerall midway in the 1974 season. The chemistry between these announcers was almost perfect. Summerall’s precise play by play and Brookshier’s analysis helped fans understand the fine points of the game. Brookshier’s conversational abilities moved the game through slack periods. Tom frequently cracked jokes and metaphors which were very incisive. CBS assigned these two to the most important game every week.
I first realized how good the Summerall-Brookshier team was in the third week of 1975. They called the Eagles 26 to 10 win over the Washington Redskins. This was the Eagles first win over the Skins in eight years. The two were at three Super Bowls:
1975 Pittsburgh over Dallas 21 to 17
1977 Dallas over Denver 27 to 1o, and
1979 Pittsburgh over the Los Angeles Rams 31 to 19.
From Philadelphia’s standpoint, their two memorable games were the final week of the 1978 season where the Eagles defeated the New York Giants 20 to 3. This gave the Birds a 9-7 record and their first winning season in 12 years. Their last game as a duo was one of the great days in Eagles history; the 20 to 7 win over the Dallas Cowboys in the 1980 NFC Championship game.
Starting in 1981, CBS teamed John Madden with Pat Summerall and Tom Brookshier became a play by play man for another less significant game . He worked with analysts such as Wayne Walker, Hank Stram, and Roger Staubach. He was very good in this new role and he retired from CBS after the 1986 season. As the internet page shows, he work for a radio station and KYW TV. His enthusiasm for the Philadelphia Eagles was contagious.
His passing was a great loss for the Philadelphia Metropolitan Area and the Eagles.
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When Matthew Schucker, a middle school teacher from Lexington, VA received an email stating that he was the Eagles Extra Points Draft Day Sweepstakes winner he thought it must be spam or some sort of misunderstanding.
“I had no idea that I’d win. This is ridiculous, it’s amazing! I just put my name in that one time, and then an email came inviting me to all of this (NFL Draft).”
Sure enough Matthew and his wife Christy were indeed the lucky winners of an all expense paid trip to the 2012 NFL Draft, the ultimate dream experience for any football fan, especially these Eagles fans. The Eagles Extra Points Draft Day Sweepstakes was a promotion that was hosted on both PhiladelphiaEagles.com and the official Eagles Facebook page that ran for over a month leading up to the draft. Fans nationwide had the opportunity to register for the once in a lifetime experience – Matthew luckily had his number called, and as a part of Schucker’s grand prize he was bestowed the honor of announcing the Eagles fourth round pick on the third day of the draft.
Shortly after receiving the email the Schucker duo packed their favorite Eagles gear and were off to New York City for the draft at Radio City Music Hall. From the moment they arrived their experience instantly became one they’d always remember.
“This has been an awesome experience!” exclaimed the longtime Eagles fan. “We got VIP entrance into the draft, we got front row seats to all the events, and we got to see the Eagles trade up and the excitement of the moment.”
Despite a whirlwind first two days, it was the third day of the draft that proved to be the most action packed for Matthew, and the Schucker’s started their morning off right.
“We got a tour of Radio City and we had breakfast with the (NFL) Commissioner (Roger Goodell),” Matthew explained. “We got to walk the walk that the first rounders did. We walked out of the green room where we had breakfast, they gave us a team hat, and we walked out to the podium to shake Roger Goodell’s hand and got a photo opportunity with him. It was all pretty neat.”
The day rolled on and Matthew’s moment of announcing the Eagles fourth round pick quickly approached.
“We were sitting in a holding area and couple picks beforehand an NFL representative came and got me so we could go over to the Eagles table,” Matthew recalled.
The Eagles then went on the clock and Matthew prepared for the moment that his trip revolved around. The pick came in, the official draft card was passed to Matthew, and the cameras went on him.
“I got to announce the pick in front of Radio City and NFL Network picked it up too, which was pretty cool,” said the Lancaster, PA native.
Once the pick was announced Matthew got the opportunity to hang out at the team table and take photos with the Eagles reps. After all of the fun, excitement and adrenaline rush subsided the draft started to wind down and the Schucker’s prepared for their final night in New York City.
The experience proved to be one of a kind for the couple, and not something they’ll soon forget. Check out all of the behind the scenes pics from Matthew and Christy’s ultimate draft experience.
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Dear Eagles Fans,
I like to say that in the world of NFL cheerleading, there comes a time when each of us must hang up the pom-poms and retire. I never thought that I would be doing this after being a part of the Eagles Cheerleaders for the past three years, but it is funny how life changes and how unpredictable those changes can be. This will be my last blog as a Philadelphia Eagles Cheerleader and I am going to take this time to write about just how wonderful my experiences were and how this is something that I will never forget. Now it’s time for a trip down memory lane…
It is funny for me to think back to March of 2009 when I announced to my parents out of the blue, that I was going to audition to be an NFL cheerleader. I can still see their reactions to the news as a startling one especially since at that point in my life I had never been a huge football fan. Instead I was the girl that loved to perform and dance at football games instead of watching them. But, I followed through with my announcement and made a promise to myself that dancing was my passion and I was not going to give up until I was a member of the squad. It was that determination and love for performing that eventually, after the month long audition process, landed me a spot among 12 other women as a rookie on the 2009-2010 season. Even three years later, I can still remember walking in by myself and performing for the first time in front of the judges. Luckily, large auditions like that one were somewhat normal for me since after graduating college, I had taken time to attend many of the “cattle call” Broadway dancer auditions in NYC. But no matter how many times you audition for any sort of job, there are always nerves especially when you attend an audition alone and don’t have the comfort of being surrounded by your best friend, or members of your dance team from college. So you can imagine that on the big open call day, when hundreds of women were there, I of course felt like a needle in a haystack. However, I quickly made friends and reminded myself that whenever you audition for anything, whats most important is to have fun and enjoy the process because whatever comes out of it, auditions are always a great way to learn about yourself and challenge yourself. Having that mentality is by far the best advice I can give to anyone …if you can see the positive in any situation, then you have nothing to loose! I believe that having a thought process like that really helped me to enjoy the audition process and feel confident in myself and my dancing. However, it wasn’t just about applying that mentality to the auditions, moreover, it was a great way to experience all of the joys and opportunities that came along with being an Eagles Cheerleader for three years.
When I first made the team I only had knowledge of what it was like from veteran cheerleaders. I had no idea just how amazing each step of the journey would actually be. Being an NFL cheerleader is so much more than just cheering. I came to learn that we were ambassadors to the Eagles Organization. We were dancers, performers, role models and yes, sometimes even actors! It was the perfect way to combine everything that I love to do into one incredible job. Now, don’t get me wrong, the work was hard! The dance rehearsals were grueling and strenuous, but the entire team became a family and the bond between all of us was what made this experience different from any other. From the moment I became a cheerleader I gained 37 new friends who have become some of the most important people I know. I also worked alongside people I truly admire, respect and look up to including Barbara Zaun, the director and Suzy Zucker, the choreographer. Everything became a team effort and although we were the Eagles Cheerleaders to our fans, we were really 38 individuals, each with something unique to bring to the team that created such a dynamic and diverse group of accomplished women. That was something I loved most about being an Eagles Cheerleader, seeing the various talent among the women and knowing that each one of us contributed to the team in a special way.
Looking back on my action packed years, I am in awe over the many things I experienced and have come to realize just how memorable those moments were and how lucky each and everyone of us who at one point or another will be an NFL cheerleader are. Never would I have thought before making the team that I would model for a eco friendly swimsuit calendar, remove 600 pounds of trash with United by Blue from the Delaware river, work alongside some of the most wonderful charitable organizations like Tackling Breast Cancer and Huddle Up for Autism, perform live at Eagles games for 67,000 fans or even act with my teamamtes alongside Owen Wilson and Reese Witherspoon in their film How Do You Know. But it all happened and I can remember the excitement I felt for each and every one of these experiences and how crazy it was when reality sunk in and I was able to take a step back and think about how thankful I was for being a part of something that makes dreams a reality. I really thought that being an Eagles Cheerleader initially just meant that I would continue on with my love for dancing, but I quickly learned it was so much more than that. It wasn’t just a job to me, it was a priority in my life because I loved it so much, wanted to live it to the fullest and embrace everything that came with it because as I said before, there comes a time when all great things eventually come to an end.
Hanging up the pom-poms has not been an easy decision to make, but my life has changed in ways that I never would have imagined when I made the team 3 years ago. In a short time I will be married (one of the biggest changes in my life!) and my acting and modeling career is moving forward in exciting ways; and while I wish I could cheer forever (and at one point thought I would), it is time for me to chase new dreams and start a new chapter in my life. At our end of the season banquet when those cheerleader who are not returning take a moment to say a short speech, I told everyone that as difficult as it is to leave something as wonderful as this behind, it is important to look to the future and be excited about the road that lies ahead. I can’t wait to travel the world with my soon to be husband and head back up to NYC for Broadway auditions and of course, watch my former cheerleading life at an upcoming Eagles game from the stands…and while these new chapters are unwritten, I will forever have the memories of being an NFL cheerleader written in stone.
Our choreographer always said that one of the things she likes best about watching us over the years are we continue to be on the squad is seeing all of us mature and become strong women. I see that now especially when I look back over my photos and think about just how far I have come in those 3 short years….
Putting on the Vera Wang uniform for the 1st time after making the squad in 2009!
Winning the Dance Award at the 2010 final audition!
Offering a helping hand each year at the EYP Playground Build!
Performing with friends + teamates at this years Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama!
Leading my very first squad as Captain in 2012!
For those of you who become an Eagles Cheerleader, an exciting path lies ahead of you and whenever it is you decide to hang up those pom-poms look back on your time with the team fondly and think about how it has shaped you, for I have witnessed several things in reviewing my time on the Eagles…I went from being a rookie- knowing nothing about what it meant to be an NFL cheerleader, to leading a squad as captain and guiding new rookies along the way; I grew friendships and acquired new dance techniques, and most importantly, I grew up and came to learn a lot about myself and what it means to be a confident and driven woman. It is in leaving the Eagles that I thank everyone who made my time as a cheerleader the most amazing and memorable years ever…
To my friends who are re-auditioning in the next couple of weeks, I wish you the best of luck and know that each and everyone of you will do great and really shine on stage!
To those of you who I never had the chance to meet and are hoping to become the newest members of this years team, enjoy every minute of the process and know that it is a huge accomplishment in itself to audition and make it this far!
For those of you who make the squad, cherish the moment you get the exciting news and remember every time you are at a game, an appearance or any other fabulous opportunity that may come your way, to really appreciate it and love every second of it because this will be the start to some of the most incredible years of your life!
To Barbara and Suzy, thank you for giving me the chance to be a member of the squad for 3 years and for believing in me! You both are such wonderful people and I feel so lucky to have worked with you!
To all the Eagles Fans, thanks for being the best fans in the NFL and for taking the time to read my blogs!
I wish every member of the 2012-2013 Eagles Cheerleading squad a successful and amazing year! I can’t wait to see you all at an Eagles game this fall!
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Trolleys or streetcars played of course a big role in intercity transportation and to suburban areas. They were fun to ride and I felt a loss when lines converted to buses. Buses smell badly. If there is any waste to power them, at least it was in a plant several miles away. Streetcars accelerate and stop much easier. There were three lines in particular I liked. Buses now on the lines lack charm.
23 Bigler. This line went clear from South Philadelphia to the Northwestern part of the city. It went north on 11th, crossed Broad Street at Ridge, then went on Germantown Avenue to Germantown, Chesnut Hill, and Mount Airy. It gave a total view of the entire city. The whole trip took about two hours. It was a delightful way to spend a Sunday afternoon when things weren’t quite so crowded. This when I looked last it was a bus.
–Not knowing the number, this trolley went from Rising Sun Avenue South on Fourth Street. If memory serves, it made the circle on Lombard Street; then went north on Fifth Street. This trolley really looked natural for the historic area.
15 Girard. This trolley traveled on right in the center of Girard Avenue. The nicest part of the line was the view from bridge over the Schuylkill River. This of course was the line that took us to the Fairmont Park Zoo. SEPTA was supposed to return a trolley on this route.
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Hey Eagles fans! So, even though it feels like the off-season for all of you die-hard football fans, we cheerleaders are already getting geared up to begin our season again! It’s hard to believe since we were just cheering at a home game in January, but believe it or not, it’s time to get started. Tomorrow night, we are having our Mock Audition Workshop at Lincoln Financial Field beginning at 6:00 PM. Any women out there who are interested in becoming Eagles Cheerleaders, you should definitely come out tomorrow! We current cheerleaders will be there to help run the workshop. We will be helping to teach the audition dance, giving advice on beauty and hair tips, helping with the physical fitness portion, and answering any questions that the hopeful cheerleaders might have. The workshop definitely gives anyone who is interested in auditioning a big advantage, because they get to see how the open call auditions are run, and they also get to learn the dance that will be taught at the open call audition on March 24th.
On Wednesday evening, we are having our end of the season banquet at Lincoln Financial Field. The banquet is a lot of fun and a really great way to end the current season and begin a new one. Of course, I wish that every cheerleader was able to return next season, because it’s always sad to see some of our teammates go, but the banquet is a really nice way for those cheerleaders to say their good-byes.
During the past 2 months of down-time, I have been working very hard at the dance studio, choreographing lots of dances for our recitals and also preparing for our spring ballet Giselle. This is always a very busy time of the year at work, but it’s also very rewarding when I get to see my hard work pay off as I finish my dances. I have also been working hard at the gym to make sure I’m staying in shape for auditions. Physical fitness is a big part of the audition, and I always want to make sure I am doing everything I can to be in the best shape for auditions.
Well, speaking of staying in shape, I’m going to head out to the gym before I have to go to work later. I’m looking forward to the beautiful weather that’s supposed to be coming later this week! I’m hoping to take advantage of it and go jogging outside with my dog! Until then, I hope you all have a great week! I’ll be sure to catch you up on the workshop and banquet!
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Hi Eagles fans! So, I left off at Friday January 27th, with our day full of appearances. Fast forward to Saturday January 28th…Ohana Day! Ohana means “family” in Hawaiian, and this event was exactly that. It was a fun family and friends day at Aloha Stadium. We cheerleaders at our usual team breakfast at 7:00AM that day (that was late for us compared to the rest of the week!), and then we headed to Aloha Stadium for Ohana Day. The event was basically a practice at the stadium that was open to the public. My boyfriend Jesse went with another cheerleader’s boyfriend, and he was able to get lots of pictures! It was a great opportunity to us to get a feel of what game day would be like. We got to introduce ourselves on the field and perform a bunch of our dances for the fans. You Eagles fans are familiar with this type of event if you have ever been to Eagles Flight Night. It’s a very similar event in that it’s a great way to see the players practice and cheerleaders perform, while participating in fun games and activities for the whole family.
After Ohana Day, we had to stay at the stadium for our pre-game rehearsal with the band Hot Chelle Rae. We were all exhausted from performing outside in the heat all morning, but once the band and the stages were set up, we all got a bit more energy and had a great rehearsal. Later that evening, we participated in the Pro Bowl All-Star Block Party, which was tons of fun! An entire main street called Kalakaua Avenue was closed to traffic, and there were tons of stages set up for meet and greets and performances. The streets were PACKED with fans! We went around to about 5 different stages throughout the night and performed some of our Pro Bowl dances and also helped aucition off NFL items for the Special Olympics. One of the cheerleader’s calendars sold for over $100! It was so much fun getting the fans pumped up for the big game, and you could really feel the energy in the entire town!
Sunday January 29th…Game Day!!! On Sunday, we all woke up early, had breakfast together, and went right over to Aloha Stadium for our final rehearsal before the big game. At 2:30 PM (Hawaii time), we were ready to go! All of our hard work had paid off, and we were ready to just go out there and have a blast. I can remember our directors telling us to have as much fun as possible out on the field and not to worry about how we stand, when we move to another part of the field, etc. They told us to just interact with the fans as much as possible and have a great time, and that’s exactly what we did! The game tons of fun, even though the NFC lost Jesse got lots of great pictures at the game too! I can’t wait to get the photo book that I made online with all of the Pro Bowl pictures!
After the game, all of the cheerleaders and our directors were treated to a delicious dinner at Wolfgang’s Steakhouse. It was a beautiful restaurant with VERY good food. What a wonderful way to end our big day! While all of the other cheerleaders got ready to hit the town after our late dinner, I decided to stay in and start packing, since I was on the first flight leaving Hawaii I had to be ready to go to the airport at 5:00AM on Monday morning.
I was so sad to say my goodbyes and miss our final breakfast together when I was being driven to the airport bright and early on Monday morning. As soon as I checked in for my flight, I was told that my flight was delayed and would possibly be canceled. About a half hour later, it was confirmed that my flight was canceled due to plane maintenance. The next flight that they were able to give me was not until Tuesday evening. At first, I was panicking, because I had to be at work on Tuesday morning. Once I was able to find a substitute to cover my classes on Tuesday, I was sooo happy to have an extra day and a half in Hawaii! Luckily, Jesse was not scheduled to fly home until Tuesday night as well, so we were finally able to spend some great quality time together, lay on the beach, do some sightseeing, and even go to Pearl Harbor. It was the PERFECT way to end my trip in Hawaii.
I took a direct flight from Honolulu to Newark (12 hours!), and then from Newark to Philadelphia. I arrived back home in Philadelphia at 1:30 on Wednesday afternoon and was back to the dance studio to teach class at 4:00! Talk about jet lag! I was extremely tired for the next 3 days, but I got right back into work and even did a few fun appearances for the Eagles. I haven’t had a day off since! As much as I miss Hawaii, it’s also good to be back home I can’t wait to see all of my teammates at our end of the season banquet in a few weeks and share my Pro Bowl experience with them. I hope you all enjoyed it!! Take a look at a few more photos! (I’ll be sure to most more soon).
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…in honor of this time of year. I would like to share with you this little gem that I find so hysterical. Maybe it’s only funny for accountants, nevertheless, I hope you enjoy!
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Two interesting pieces of bronze sculpture in Fairmount Park are near each other and well placed.
All of us know that Abraham Lincoln became President when our country was badly divided. Making matters worse were the sharp divisions within the North and South about going to war and terms of peace. Draft riots occurred in New York City since young men understandably did not want to serve in the military. Prominent figures, such as William Lloyd Garrison and Horace Greely, thought Lincoln was not pressing enough for the emancipation of slaves. Members of President’s Cabinet tried to pull him in different directions like wad of bubblegum. As late as April of 1864, it seemed likely that the Republicans would not renominate him. In August of 1964, it looked like the Democrats would win the general election in November. Union victories helped Lincoln in both cases.
And so in today’s Philadelphia, Abraham Lincoln stands at one of East River Drives worst intersections. Crossing it to view the statue close is a mad dash; actually people can see him much better across the the highway. Abraham Lincoln is brooding with his depression and the problems of a divided country. The traffic there today is a modest depiction of the disorder he faced. Lincoln’s expression appropriately evokes the spirit of times rather than sentiment or sorrow.
This Remington sculpture has a counterpart in painting. I had an inexpensive reproduction of the painting that I gave away. The Cowboy seems really alive cantering at a good speed on the east side of the drive. When first seeing it as a kid, I was looking for the cowboy driving the cattle across the Schuylkill River. It a reminiscent of the two movies; Red River starring John Wayne or The Tall Men starring Clark Gable. The traffic destroys some of the romance of the work itself. With the speed the cars go, it seems like drivers are trying to pass the Cowboy.
Long cattle drives lasted only about five years until the railroad made them unnecessary. The trail herd passed through some beautiful country; but of course the drive itself was a miserable experience not really conducive to enjoying the scenery. Philadelphia has a beautiful skyline; but commuting on the three expressways is anything but pleasant.
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Happy Friday Eagles Fans! It’s finally the weekend and I bet you all are just as excited to see it come as I am. I just got home from an appearance this morning down in Southwest Philadelphia, where fellow cheerleader Jen and I partnered up with Habitat Humanity to give a single mother a newly finished home. Now, our construction skills are not up to par but we were experts with paint brushes. The experience must come from the annual Playground Build that we do with the Eagles Youth Partnership and I recently repainted my bedroom so I must said we did a great job.
I feel like I have so much to tell you guys in such little time. As you know as a squad we traveled down to Mobile, Alabama to cheer
at the Senior Bowl which was an amazing experience. We all had a blast and the weather was to die for!!!! Eighty degrees at the end of January….I could get used to that. Unfortunately though, the dream had to end as we headed back to the freezing cold city of Philadelphia. I have to fill you in with a day-to-day recap next time we talk, right now I think we should get back to the journey to Kuwait that I have been telling you about. I feel like its has been forever since I talked about the trip, where did I leave off? Thats right our first ever show over in the middle east….IT”S SHOW TIME!!!
After de-boarding the Robert Smalls Army Ship we went to dinner and prepared ourselves to take the stage. Prior to the show we were all excited with anticipation and hoped that all the soldiers would enjoy the performance, which they did!!! Many of them came up to us saying it was the best show they have seen and they throughly enjoyed every party of it, they didn’t want it to end. The show we did consisted of a variety of different sections. We started off with a dance portion which lasted about 15 minutes. We then went into the game section, the best part of the show!!! It was a blast interacting with all the soldiers and getting them involved. In the game sections, 5 of us went out into the crowed and pulled volunteers. There was an Eagles trivia round, a push up contest, the cheer contest, and the most-loved model walk contest. In the model walk contest the soldiers showed there true side as they strutted down the runway we made and “flaunted their goods”. It was hilarious and the crowd always went crazy while the contest went on. I swear I am going to see one of them in the Victoria Secret Fashion Show next year, they were naturals! Our first show was a success and we were ecstatic!!!!! We wanted to perform repeatedly and never wanted it to end. Following the show we had a meet and greet right away where we got to meet everyone in the audience. When the meet and greet concluded, SGT Benson, SGT Eder, and SGT Almary presented the six of us with certificates of appreciation. At that moment I was in shock. Don’t be thanking us, we thank you for everything that they are doing, they are truly the most amazing people ever!! Our first official night in Kuwait had come to an end and I will never forget it.
Tuesday started off with us waking up bright and early to cheer the soldiers on at the National Guard’s Birthday 5K run. You would think being in the middle east it would be warm, but apparently we just missed the beautiful weather and the week we came was the first week of the cold, wintery weather. We brought it from Philadelphia all the way to Kuwait, GREAT! It was so awesome to see all the soldiers running, they really get into the zone. Jess evn almost got run over by the 1st place winner and our main security guard Marvin I think had a heart attack, it was the funniest thing I have every seen. Jess was perfectly fine, she actually felt bad cause she did not want to mess up the soldiers’ running time. As the soldiers crossed the finished line we cheered them on and they were all so grateful for us being there. In true cheerleader fashion, we ended the run with a delicious piece of cake which made for the perfect breakfast. Time flies when your having fun and before we knew it, it was time to travel to LSA and Camp Morrelle. On our way there, we got into a fender bender!!! If you think driving in Philadelphia is bad, you have never experienced the streets of Kuwait. Supposedly over in Kuwait they don’t really have any rules when it comes to driving, or if they do they aren’t enforced and the citizens drive however they please. It all started when we were sitting in traffic waiting to get off the exit and a car came plowing by, literally, and swiped the entire side of the bus. Doesn’t seem to bad, right? But he hit us while driving on the SIDEWALK and after hitting us continued his way to his destination WITHOUT STOPPING!!! It was so crazy, we were all stunned and couldn’t believe our eyes.
As we arrived at the base we met up with Major Engle and Chief Hippler. We started our visit with a commanders call and learned that the entire base was made up of tents which is where all the soldiers spend there nights. It was a base made for transitioning soldiers. This means that any soldiers that are making there way home because their tour is over, come to LSA to spend their last 2 nights in Kuwait before heading home. The bases main responsibility is to keep track on all soldiers entering and exiting Kuwait. After the commanders call we were invited to go and observe a special mission called Blankets for Kabul. Kabul is the largest city in Afghanistan and the soldiers were packing boxes with blankets and supplies that are no longer in use for the war and donating them to the citizens of Kabul. It was extremely touching and showed us how all the troops give back to the countries in the middle east. We continued our visit by going over to Camp Morrelle to greet the Navy Seabee’s. The Navy Seabee’s are construction battalions who go into an area to construct Forward Operating Bases (FOB’s) for the soldiers to use. This was one of the coolest meet and greet we did over there because we were just given an hour and half to just hang out and get to know all of them on a personal level. We got to learn each of there stories and where they have had tours. It is very popular to write your travels on the inside of you hat consisting of dates and where you went so you could always remember. Before leaving Camp Morelle, we left a package for a fellow Philadelphian who was based there but was out on a mission, so we were unable to meet him. His mom had reached out on the Eagles Facebook page and just wanted us to tell him that they love and miss him and to give him a hug for her. It was so amazing to know that we were part of that and were able to make both mom and son happy, it was another memorable moment I will never forget.
After the meet and greet, we had a few hours of free time before our show. We walked around the base where we found
bunkers and got to take pictures on an MRAP that just happened to drive by. Since we started the day so early we went to Green Beans, which is considered to be there Starbucks. On the way we met two Black Hawk Pilots who were on their way home for the holidays. Kevin and Darrel were also on there way to Green Beans and insisted on treating us to our coffee. Just like the meet and greet with the Navy Seabee’s, this was an opportunity for us to get to know the soldiers on a personal level and hear their incredible stories, especially doing the job they have.
Following our coffee break, it was time to get ready for our second show. Again it was a success and the model walks were outstanding!!! This show was especially memorable because of the changing area we were given. Instead of a locker room or a bathroom which we normally change in, we were given our van that we have been traveling in. It was a challenge being in such tight corners but we pulled through and again had a blast with it. Another funny part to this show was that in the opening dance portion of the show, Paige came on stage ready to perform with the wrong set of poms and didn’t realize it!!!! The entire time she didn’t even know, mean while we were all cracking up at the huge, bright green 1960s pom’s that don’t look anything like are regular pom’s. But hey, just like our choreographer Suzi always says, “it’s live theatre, anything can happen” which did and made this show special in its own little way. After the show we had another meet and greet with hundred of soldiers that came out to see our performance. The next thing we knew we were back at Camp Arifjan, signing more cards and getting ready for the next day’s activities. Camp Buehring he we come!!!!!!
Alright guys I think I am going to go do some laundry since that is what I am supposed to be doing right now. Make sure to bundle up this weekend, I hear snow is in the forecast. Hope to talk to you soon!!!
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Hey Eagles fans! So, as promised, I have a lot more to tell you about my Pro Bowl experience. I’m pretty sure I left off after my long day of rehearsals followed by a fun luau on Wednesday. By Thursday January 26th, I was FINALLY adjusted to the time difference in Hawaii. We cheerleaders all met at 6:ooAM for our daily team breakfast and then headed to Aloha Stadium for our first rehearsal on the field. It was so much fun rehearsing the pre-game dance and our sideline dances that we had been working so hard on. The long rehearsals on Tuesday and Wednesday really paid off when we got to the stadium, because we felt very prepared and were able to just let go and have fun. I must say, I wasn’t used to rehearsing in the hot weather though, since it was so cold back in Philadelphia when I left! I love the hot summer weather though, so I definitely was not complaining!
After rehearsal, we went back to our resort and had different appearances to go to. My squad (NFC 1) did an appearance at Wolfgang’s Steakhouse, which is a beautiful restaurant near our resort. Wolfgang’s Steakhouse was generous enough to provide all of the cheerleaders with a delicious dinner after the Pro Bowl game, so it felt good to be able to do an appearance there and thank their owner and staff ahead of time. The Pro Bowl trophy was on display there, so we took some great photos with fans in front of it. Later that evening, we had a team dinner at Dave and Busters. It was nice getting to have some dinners together and have fun and relax with each other after very longs days or rehearsals and appearances.
On Friday January 27th, we all met for breakfast at 7:30 AM (that was our chance to “sleep in” haha). Friday was a day filled with appearances, but it was tons of fun! After breakfast I had about a 2 hour break, which was a lot compared to the rest of the week! I took full advantage of that down-time and hung out by the pool to get in some sun :) Then I had the pleasure of teaching one of our sideline dances to a group of Japanese dancers with fellow cheerleader Lindsay from the Seahawks. Since I’m a dance teacher, this was right up my alley! The Japanese cheerleaders were my age, and even though most of them didn’t speak English, I felt that we really bonded and had a great time together. They were terrific dancers too! They performed their dance later that day at a nearby shopping mall and did a great job.
After teaching the dance clinic, I had a little more free time and was able to meet up with my boyfriend Jesse for a little bit. I didn’t get to see him very much up till this point, since our schedule was extremely busy. That night we had an amazing appearance at an event called Sunset On The Beach. The event was open to the public, so Jesse was able to come and watch our performances. At Sunset On the Beach, a big part of the Waikiki beach is closed off and there is a huge movie screen and a stage set up for performances. The movie Remember The Titans played on the beach after we cheerleaders did a few performances. Hundreds of fans came out to watch us perform and get autographs. At one point, I was signing my photo cards and posing for photos, and I stopped for a minute to take a look around and realize that I was in the middle of so many fans flashing their cameras at me and asking for autographs, and the whole thing seemed so surreal. I could not believe that all of those people were really there to see us. It was such an amazing feeling and something that I will never forget!
Enjoy some more photos, and check back soon for the my next update!!
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