TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -- Bancorp South Arena in Tupelo is going to be packed on Saturday as cheerleading teams from all over the state of Mississippi and neighboring states are flocking to Tupelo for a competition. One local gym is excited that they are able to have a competition in their hometown.
"I’m just excited its happening because you don’t know when any other competitions are going to happen," Ace of North Mississippi cheerleader Skylar Carr said.
This year of course is very different. Masking up during competitions, staying socially distant from other teams and that’s even if they get to go. A lot of competitions have been held virtually, which according to teammate, Allie McCormick, is just not the same.
"When you’re just videoing it, and you don’t have that like crowd," McCormick said. "It’s just harder to get through the routine than if it was in person."
Tomorrow, the competition will be in person. Deep South Spirit is the company putting the competition, called, the Rock'n'Roll Classic, on. According to Ace of North Mississippi Owner, David Shuch, for some gyms, it will be the first time competing in person and not virtually since last March.
"I know our athletes are so excited," Shuch said. "We are just excited for live cheerleading instead of being in front of a camera."
And for Carr, it’s a bonus to be able to perform at home.
"Hometown competitions are my absolute favorite, because all my family and friends can be here," Carr said. "And most of the bigger events are getting canceled and the bigger events are the best ones."
Bigger events carry more risk during the pandemic. Schuch said his gym will meet outside to keep his teams safe.
"What we’re doing, Ace of North Mississippi, is be outside," Shuch said. "And have a pretty big tailgate going on where we can all meet outside where we encourage masks and maintain social distancing. That’s where our teams will meet instead of meeting inside and then after you’re done competing you have to head straight outside."
The action starts tomorrow morning at 8 AM and should go until around 6 PM.