The Battling Lancer Girls have come a long way. "When the girls started they were barely able to do even novice stunts, as several girls are new to cheerleading," wrote Assistant Coach Susan Penrod in an email to Carlsbad Patch.
The team of 21 girls ages 8 to 11 soon learned how to cheer and how to win competitions. They recently won the Wescon Regional competition qualifying them to go to Orlando, Florida to compete at nationals on Dec. 4.
"Unfortunately, not all of the girls are going to be able to go due to the expense of the competition and the quick deadline that funds are due. We really never planned on make it this far, so we didn't aggressively fund-raise this year. They have worked so hard and come so far. It's heart breaking that we may not be able to take everyone," explained Penrod.
The cost per girl is $492, not including food. The overall cost to take 21 girls is approximately $20,000.
"We have $3,000 in our travel fund. Because the competition is affiliated with Disney, the team and coaches are required to stay at a Disney hotel, so we are unable to cut costs by shopping around. We have found some really good prices on airfare and about 13-15 girls already have their plane tickets," said Penrod.
The team is hosting fundraisers to help pay for the trip.
On Nov. 28 from 5-8 p.m. Knockout Pizzaria in Carlsbad will donate 50% of purchases to the team's travel fund if patrons mention "Carlsbad Pop Warner Cheer." The team also hopes to have a 50/50 raffle that night too.
Other fundraisers in the works include activities in Carlsbad Village this weekend and cheering for tips at the Charger Game on Sunday.
"The girls are also setting up lemonade stands, we're holding garage sales at individual homes and asking local businesses and friends and family to donate," said Penrod.
Anyone can donate online by going to carlsbadpopwarner.com and clicking the "donate" button. On the "review your donation" page be sure to click on "send message to seller" and type in "cheer travel" so the team gets all of the money.