Kewanee Dance Team Prepares For First Ever State Competition - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Kewanee Dance Team Prepares For First Ever State Competition

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The Kewanee High School dance team will take part in a unique piece of school history next weekend.

They will be the school's first dance team to compete in Illinois' first ever state dance competition.

All while practicing for regular half-time shows at high school games.

For two and a half hours each day after school, these girls practice dancing.

"That was a little bit sloppy," says coach Sam Harker as she directs the girls to perfect the pirouettes and calypsos needed to wow their audiences.

"No one really knows how much effort we put into it because it's a lot of work, no one really knows how much placement work it takes," says Kewanee senior Sidney Uitermarkt.

She says next week's competition is bigger than a basketball game performance. The team wants to earn a piece of hardware for their hard work. It's a chance it doesn't often get.

"I've done one competition freshman year, it was a lot of fun but I've never competed for the state before, so I'm excited to see how far we can go," says Uitermarkt.

"It's kind of huge for us, and they've been begging me since I started to do a competition," says Coach Sam Harker.

She never got to compete when she was performing on the team six years ago. Making this opportunity all the more challenging.

"To be able to come full circle, to be able to be the coach and mold them as dancers means a lot, I feel so blessed I get to be the one to do it," says Harker.

She says the team is nervous. Many of the girls agree.

"We're used to the crowds here, because they're our friends and family, going to a sectional competition, there's other teams there," says senior Courtney Carrasca.

She says they have something to prove to the other teams...

"This is our first year competing so they might think we're underdogs, I hope after competition they think of us as a different squad."

...and to themselves.

"You hear IHSA, everyone knows what that is," says Harker.

As they try to add their own plaque to the school's hallway.

The team will be holding a rummage sale Saturday at the Kewanee High School auditorium.

It's raising money to pay for costume accessories for the sectional competition.

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