Northern Stars Host Dance Competition at LSN

Story by Abby Langle – Editor-in-Chief

  Every year the Northern Stars dance team hosts a competition at Lee’s Summit North. The event draws schools from all over the state to compete. This year they will host it on January 20th and 21st. Hosting a competition takes lots of work and help from everyone. Since the Northern Stars host the competition, they are not allowed to compete but they do get to perform two routines to get feedback from the judges for later competitions.

   Shelley McCain is the head coach of the Northern Stars Dance Team. She has been a dance coach for 35 years, 28 of them being at Lee’s Summit North after spending the first seven at Lee’s Summit High School. Her responsibilities as leader of the team increase as she organizes and puts together the competition they host.

   “It is a huge undertaking.  We have all the judges, the schedule, the food, the trophies, the judging forms, security, music, everything that we have to organize.  It takes me a couple of months to organize,” McCain said.

   The Northern Stars dancers assist in helping McCain by taking on different roles and jobs to help the day of, making sure things run smoothly. Sasha Plowman is one of the seniors on the dance team and has been a part of it all four years of her high school career.

   “Since we are hosting we all have different jobs so we spend time learning our jobs and getting things ready. Everyone has a certain job, on the Friday we host so we don’t leave school and spend the time from when school is over to about 4:30-5 setting up signs, classrooms, food, vendors, and the actual rooms for competition. On Friday we run three rooms, it’s our day for solo, duos, and ensembles. So each room has 2-3  dancers in there running music and point sheets and making sure everything is running smoothly. We also have girls helping at our concession stands and helping direct dancers to their dressing room. As well as running around asking anyone if they need help. The same thing basically happens on Saturday but we only run two rooms for Middle School, JV, and Varsity teams. When the division we would compete in runs around, we stretch and get ready to perform our routines. At the end of the day we help with the big awards ceremony and then help clean up around the school. It’s a really busy and sometimes stressful two days but it’s one of my favorite events of the year. As a team through stress and other situations we all become really close and make a lot of memories,” Plowman said.

   Being a part of an activity or club can help you find a sense of community and find people who you consider family. That is clear with this team.

   “My favorite part is that we are truly like a family. We are super close and even when we are frustrated with each other we still love each other. We are always pushing everyone to be the best versions of ourselves and we just have a really good time together,” Plowman said.

   The dance team year after year pulls off a great competition for many different schools to compete in. It helps to bring the team together and it is something fun they can be apart of. Even though North will not be competing, they still invite anyone who is interested to come out and support the schools participating as well as cheer on the Broncos during their routines.


Photo courtesy of Sasha Plowman