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Dec, 2016

Pop Warner Celebrates 30th Anniversary National Cheer & Dance Championships

Back in 1998, approximately 40 teams competed in the first-ever Pop Warner National Cheerleading Championship in DeKalb County, GA. That year, four national champions were crowned in the inaugural one-day event.

Fast-forward 30 years later to 2017, and more than 450 teams will be performing throughout the six-day event, featuring teams in seven age-divisions (Tiny-Mite, Mitey-Mite, Jr. Pee Wee, Pee Wee, Jr, Varsity, Varsity and Bantam), three size divisions (small, medium and large) and four skill levels (PW1, PW2, PW3 and PW4).

The Pop Warner National Championships have also grown from smaller venues in Georgia and California during the early years, to one of the premier sports venues in the country – the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

Not only do competitors perform at a top-notch venue, they also get to experience the excitement and magic of Walt Disney World Resort while they’re here – adding to an already unforgettable experience.

Over the past few years, the program has also experienced a significant growth in competitive Dance teams. In 2015, 53 dance teams competed in the national championships; In 2016, that number grew to 70; and in 2017, an incredible 106 dance teams will compete for a national title!

Teams have traveled from all over the world to compete in the nation’s premier youth cheer & dance championship, including teams from Russia, Guam and Mexico. Pop Warner teams from Hawaii also routinely make the annual trip for the opportunity to be crowned a Pop Warner National Champion.

What was once comprised of just a few hours and a handful of national champions has blossomed into a six-day, 450+ team event showcasing the best-of-the-best in youth cheerleading and dance in just 30 years.

What will it look like in another 30 years? The possibilities are endless.


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