Rec → All Star
1. When did Marlboro Competitive Cheer form? Tell us how it all started!
Marlboro Cheer started in 1990 as a sideline program by Debra Coley and Sharese Stevens. They started under the guidance of the Marlboro Boys and Girls Club with 12 young ladies. These women had no idea what cheerleading was supposed to be but understood that young ladies needed an outlet and something to do while they stood on the field watching there brothers play football. These ladies made a sincere commitment to cheerleading, learning everything needed including the competitive side of the sport. Once parents in the community saw their dedication, the word spread and so did the program. They soon moved to a middle school gym where they could concentrate more on competition. They stayed in the school until it was decided by the principal that their growing program was too big for the school. With trust and faith, they rented a large unit to house their than 80 girls and turned it into Marlboro Competitive Cheer (MCC) first home. This was a select sport under the recreational program. Within 5 years, MCC became a household name in Prince George County, Maryland and grew to over 200 participants demanding a move to a bigger location. In November 2015, MCC relocated to an 8,000+ sq ft location and is very grateful to call it home. After 26 years, the MCC program directors thought it was time to take another leap of faith into a new arena and announced on May 6, 2017 that MCC would become the an All-Star Team. With current membership of 298 which equates to 14 cheer teams and the introduction of their first dance team, MCC is excited about this new venture.
2. What were some struggles you’ve overcome throughout the years?
The biggest struggle is people not understanding MCC’s mission. Some call it cheerleading, we call this a ministry. Our mission is to make cheerleaders champions in life first and foremost. Winning on the competition mat feels good, but it is a by-product of our commitment to make young lives better. We work continuously to drive this point home. We believe that because we have remained faithful on this point, many dedicated people, have come along to help. Over the years, we’ve had very talented people join our staff on a voluntary basis. Their guidance and dedication has significantly contributed to the success of our organization. Our membership has consistently increased and we have been grateful to have participants “grow up” in our program. Many, understanding MCC’s investment in their own lives have return to pay forward the experience. Others, who now have their own families, have brought their children to gain the experience that they had while participating at MCC.
In the past we have also struggled with kids and parents advancing past what recreations cheerleading offered. We have had many athletes leave us because they wanted to have the “all star experience” or participate in certain levels, competitions etc that were not open to us. That’s one of the reasons we are excited about this transition. We now have the capacity to accommodate all age, skill, and commitment levels of competitive cheer.
3. What made you want to advance to an Allstar program? We want to hear about the transformation!
Since we had been a part of the recreational league for 26 years. MCC directors decided that it was time for a new chapter. For years, we’ve admired the excellence of the all-star platform and built the operation of our recreational program around the principles of all-star. Our parents supported and invested in this. Teaming up with vendors, we have made a natural evolution towards all-star and this year arrived at the decision that we were ready to take the leap!! We announced the decision to our parents at the U.S. Finals in Virginia Beach, Va. Our parents were both nervous and excited (we were too!). We did our homework. We met with staff from Varsity and Epic Brands to talk through the transition. We had representatives from both come in and speak with our parents about the transition. We’ve invested in training for our coaching staff and we’ve moved forward from there. Teaming up with vendors such Spirit FX, Tumble Tech, Mykel Jones Choreography and High Five Choreography, we look forward to an exciting inaugural season.
4. What are you most looking forward to for the 2017-2018 season?
Seeing the fruits of the labor. Many people have been working very hard to get us prepared for the season. We have over 100 volunteers on staff and they all share in the desire to make this season memorable! Our girls are putting in the work, our parents are putting in the time, our coaches are going above and beyond and our vendors committed to helping us be all we can be. Our directors are looking forward to learning and experiencing the cheer world from the all-star perspective.
5. Any other fun info you’d like to share?
While we have a robust competitive program, we also like to keep it fun. We have parties like open house and harvest night, outings like weekend getaways for the kids, skate parties and go-cart night, celebrations like our Octoberfest honoring cancer survivors and raising money for cancer awareness. We have a wonderful partnership with the We Believe Foundation, who help young people with cancer realize their dreams. Of course we get excited about our MCC Showcase which started as a halftime performance at a high school basketball game and now has an attendance of over 700 guests. It’s a major production of its own.
MCC has become our legacy. We take pride in our organization and want to ensure that we leave a long-lasting legacy that positively impacts as many as we can. Who Are We – MCC!! #Marlboro Competitive Cheer #Making Cheerleaders Champions!