Dance Team Returns from Nationals with a Successful End to the Season


Lainey O’Neil, Staff Writer

The LFHS Varsity dance team just recently returned from their annual trip to Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Florida competing in the holy grail of all dance competitions: The UDA Nationals. 

They traveled to end their long season in which they danced a series of demanding events and competitions such as Regionals, Conference, Sectionals, State, and eventually Nationals.

The trip to Nationals is held very near and dear to the dance team as they have been going every year since 1990. 

The quest to nationals really begins in the summer, when the team has to qualify. 

The team has put in a crazy amount of practices and preparation into their dances for nationals; more than people may realize. They practice up to two and a half hours every day after school, and they dedicated pretty much their entire winter break to intense Nationals preparations. 

“We’ll be in the gym four hours a day, you can’t travel anywhere over winter break, you have to be here to practice,” said junior LFDT member Elsa Dahlgren. 

In Florida, the team started with their pom dance in the preliminary rounds, followed by the semifinals and finals, and they started their jazz routine in the semifinals.

The team placed 11th in the jazz category and 8th in pom in the UDA nationals competition. 

Members on the team acknowledge their placement this year wasn’t their best compared to past years, but it’s really the experience of performing under the reputable castle that makes Nationals so special and meaningful. 

“The thing that makes nationals so special is knowing that it’s our very last thing to end off our season,” said senior captain Lauren Milanak. “This is the place where all of the hard work we put into practice pays off and the reward is dancing under the castle.”