ERIE, Pa. — Nearly 1,000 cheerleaders competed in the Winter Beach Blast Cheer and Dance Championships at the Bayfront Convention Center on Sunday.
Champion Cheer Central hosted the event, which attracted about 85 school and recreational teams from across the tri-state area, including Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Buffalo.
Cheerleaders and dancers ranged in age from 3-years-old to college-aged.
The event featured a variety of levels and dance styles, and winners were presented large trophies and other awards.
The Winter Beach Blast was held at Family First Sports Park in 2016, but was moved to the convention center to accommodate larger crowds.
Organizers says the popularity of cheerleading continues to grow.
“The level of sportsmanship that we have here cheering for the other teams and the camaraderie that we see at these events is amazing,” said Heather Petz, president of Champion Cheer Central. “Cheerleading has just grown so much, and the level of difficulty has grown, as well.”
Champion Cheer Central will put on an all-dance competition, Champions of Dance, on April 2, 2017 at the Bayfront Convention Center.
The Albion-based cheer and dance event company will host the Lake Erie National Cheer and Dance Championships at the Erie Insurance Arena on April 9, 2017.
For more event information, visit championcheercentral.com/.