Last night was a joyful and emotional occasion for the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders – our End of Year Banquet was the last group event for our 2013 squad. The girls enjoyed a beautiful dinner and a touching video that highlighted the season’s adventures. The evening was filled with cheers and tears as every moment and memory was celebrated.
Each year the squad votes on Rookie of the Year and Veteran of the Year. This year’s Rookie of the Year honor went to Jennifer Kathryne, and the Veteran of the Year award went to fourth-year Group Leader Lauren Williams.
The DCC careers of Jackie Bob and Mia Greenhouse were celebrated as they were given the rare and exceptional 5th Year Charm.
One of the highlights of the evening was when 11 DCC rookies received the coveted Rookie Ring, which is a symbol of their achievement in completing their first season as a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. Introduced in 1978 by director Suzanne Mitchell, the ring is a small, simple, 14 kt. gold band with the initials DCC delicately carved into it.
Thirty-six years later, this meaningful tradition is continued when each rookie gets her ring as a symbol of dedication to excellence, commitment to team, honor and character. The ring, worn on the pinkie finger of more than 600 DCC Alumni, remains a small, but strong symbol of a magical time in their lives.
The banquet was a joyful, yet difficult evening for seven very special retiring veterans. I avoided saying “goodbye” to Jackie, Mia, Lauren, Amelia, Mackenzie, Carisa and Olivia. I preferred to say “good luck.”
Since we started the season in May with our DCC creed of 12 Promises, I decided to make some promises of my own to the team:
- I promise these days will be some of the best days of your life.
- I promise you are more confident than you were a year ago.
- I promise you are more poised than you were a year ago.
- I promise you are more prepared to succeed in whatever career you choose, than you were before becoming a DCC.
- I promise you can handle more than you think you can.
- I promise you have inspired someone.
- I promise you have warmed the hearts of others by just being fun.
- I promise you will wish for one more practice, one more bus ride and one more game.
- I promise your hearts will hurt when you walk out of this dinner and realize you don’t have practice tomorrow night with 37 of your best friends.
- I promise THIS 2013 squad is special and this TEAM will be missed.
- I promise you’ve made me proud!
After my 29th End of Year Banquet, and before dismissing the team, I avoided saying, “Tonight, is OUR last night.” Instead, I gave the squad my final “Sister Kelli” message for the season.
Simply put, I said, “goodnight to everyone and go inspire someone!”