While many New Englanders are looking forward to the third game of an NFL triple-header Thanksgiving Day, when New England travels to MetLife Stadium to take on the Jets; Marian High families will be glued to the television waiting for the halftime show from the Detroit Lions-Texans NFL game.
Sunday, the Marian cheerleading squad was given a sendoff by the football players, family and friends. The team took a train to Detroit. The cheerleaders raised more than $25,000 so they could perform in the halftime show on Thanksgiving Day in Detroit. Organizers, estimated the trip would cost about $1,000 per cheerleader.
In August, the cheerleaders attended their annual cheerleading camp at Babson Colege. During the camp, the squad of 27 girls won awards for best gymnastics, best dance, best all-around team, the unit award and grand champions award.
The Marian Mustangs beat out 11 squads at camp, to be awarded a spot in the NFL Thanksgiving game half-time show. About 500 cheerleaders nationwide are expected to be a part of the show.
To raise funds for the once-in-a-lifetime trip, the cheerleaders held a mini golf tournament with American Cancer Society, sold candy, washes scores of vehicles and sold mum plants at Framingham Youth Football games.
While in Detroit this week, the squad will work with choreographers for the show. During those practice sessions, cheerleaders can compete individually to earn one of $900,000 in college scholarships.
The team is coached by Carol Mallegni.