Your 2016 Buffalo Bandettes!

Your 2016 Buffalo Bandettes!

Friday, February 5, 2016

Bandette of The Week Sarah

This week, we begin taking a look at the rookies in our Bandette of The Week series and launching it off will be Sarah, who dances on Stephanie's line on gamedays. She chose to try out after being enthralled by the Bandettes' dancing over the years and jumped at the opportunity to join in the excitement. In truth, perhaps a college job may have helped her fit in as a Bandette more than anything as she spent some time working at Disney World. As most longtime readers are well aware, there is definitely a big Disney connection to the Bandettes as long-time coach Erin Y is perhaps Western New York's biggest Disney fan and former captain Meghan F is a travel agent working with Disney. In any event, Sarah is loving the friendships she's building on the squad and how it's affecting her life as a whole. This past week has been perhaps her favorite part so far as being a positive influence on children is a big deal to her and she probably got to do that more this past week, working with the Junior Bandettes, than at any other time thus far. As much as she's loving all the time spent as a Bandette, I have a strong hunch she's glad there are no home games in the final weekend in February so she can spend some time glued to Netflix for the release of Fuller House, the upcoming sequel to her all-time favorite show. Sarah's secondary photo is from the recent game against the Toronto Rock. Shown cheering on a Dhane Smith goal late in the 2nd quarter are MaKenzie, Sarah, and Jessica.
MaKenzie, Sarah, and Jessica

From the Jills comes a photo from the Tailgate Warriors set in Lot C before the 2009 preseason game against Chicago. Several of the Jills made appearances throughout the day and we got some photos with some of the local celebrities on hand for the show. Shown posing for this photo are Ayeshia, Keisha, Kelly Ann, and Kristen with famed Wing King Drew Cerza.
Ayeshia, Keisha, Wing King Drew Cerza, Kelly Ann, and Kristen

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Could the Jets Flight Crew settlement mean anything for the Jills?

As most who pay any attention to pro cheerleading are well aware, the Jets Fight Crew won their lawsuit against the New York Jets this past week. In all, there were 5 cheerleading squads across the NFL dealing with lawsuits over the past two years. The Raiderettes, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders, the Ben-Gals, and now the Flight Crew can now finally move past it all and move forward with the assurances that their members can no longer be deprived of fair compensation.
What does this all mean for the Buffalo Jills, whose lawsuit is still outstanding? It could mean a lot. There are currently 25 teams in the NFL without official cheerleading squads, with unofficial squads working to fill the void with the NY Giants, Detroit Lions, Cleveland Browns, and the Buffalo Bills over the past few years. To anyone who understands the true purpose of pro cheerleaders, public relations, especially with children and the military, not having a squad is embarrassing and detrimental to the NFL's goal of the growth of the game. We also have to take into account what people want and when a film crew was in Buffalo working on a documentary about NFL Cheerleading, most of the response was in favor of bringing back the Jills.
On the other hand, it could mean very little. Unlike the Jills, each of those other squads has been run directly by the organization that runs the NFL team. The Jills were one of a few squads contracted out to outside organizations to run. After the lawsuits became such big news around the league, the San Francisco 49ers did away with that arrangement so as to ensure no outside company could abuse the Gold Rush Cheerleaders in their name like Stejon Productions has been accused of doing with the Jills. There are also a pair of other noteworthy differences between the Jills case and the cases of the other squads. For one, those other lawsuits were primarily about the lack of monetary compensation while the original 5 ladies in the Jills' lawsuit had the primary complaint of abusive treatment in the 2012 and 2013 seasons. The biggest difference, however, lies in the defendants of the lawsuits. The other squads sued the teams that ran them and that was it. The Jills lawsuit names 4 separate defendants:The Buffalo Bills; the NFL itself because of Roger Goodell's signature on the contracts that the Jills signed; Citadel Communications, which ran the Jills through the 2011 season (Citadel merged with Cumulus Media in September of 2011): and Stejon Productions, which ran the squad during the 2012 and 2013 seasons and made the unilateral decision to shut down the squad, the only squad shut down during the rash of lawsuits. With 4 defendants, it's not as simple a case as the others.
It's hard to say exactly what the other lawsuits being settled means for the Jills so they only thing we can do is to remain ever-vigilant in the cause to return them to the sidelines and have faith in former Houghton College cheerleader Kim Pegula to do the right thing as owner of the Buffalo Bills and reinstate the Jills as soon as possible after the legal issues involved in the lawsuit and whatever contractual rights Stejon Productions has are resolved.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

See the Bandettes at the Buffalo Auto Show!

Three members of the Buffalo Bandits — Ryan Benesch, David Brock and Dhane Smith — will appear at the Auto Show from 6 to 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 12, to sign autographs and have photos taken with their fans. Several members of the Buffalo Bandettes, the professional dance team for the Buffalo Bandits, will also be on hand to greet fans!
See more about the Auto Show, taking place at the Buffalo-Niagara Convention Center Feb 11-14, at http://www.buffaloscoop.com/special-guests-will-keep-the-buffalo-auto-show-buzzing-all-weekend-long/
So stop by early and you may see some sights like this
LB posing in a car at the 2010 Buffalo Auto Show

Friday, January 29, 2016

Bandette of The Week Jennifer

This week, the Bandettes Appearance Captain gets the featured spot as our Buffalo Bandette of The Week. In her 2nd year on the Bandettes, Jennifer gets to show off her leadership abilities in her new role on the squad. A Chicagoan by birth, she's a huge sports fan and especially basketball. It's just a shame that thanks to her youth, she wasn't old enough to really appreciate the runs of 3 consecutive titles by her hometown Bulls. Jennifer isn't planning on being satisfied with being a pro dancer and a fan as she intends to pursue a career as an athletic trainer after getting her Master's degree. Jennifer's secondary photo comes from the Bandits' Opener against Calgary. As the Bandettes were waiting to head out to perform near the end of the 3rd quarter, Jennifer, Syidah, and Ti got together for a photo together, the three ebony beauties on the squad.
Jennifer, Syidah, and Ti
From the Jills comes a photo from the 2008 Buffalo Jills Calendar Release Party. Things were winding down late in the evening and a few of the Jills posed for photos. Shown posing for this photo are then-2nd year vets Jill and Ayeshia.
Jill and Ayeshia

Sunday, January 24, 2016

The Bandettes at the Bandits-Rock

After an overtime loss in Colorado last Saturday night, the Buffalo Bandits returned home to the First Niagara Center last night to face off against the rival Toronto Rock, a team they went 1-2 against last season. The game started out pretty tight with the Rock holding a slight edge over Buffalo for most of the 1st quarter. However, their 4-3 lead early in the 2nd was the last time as the Bandits' offense awoke in a big way and they put in 7 goals before Toronto got on the board again sending their rivals back to Canada with a 12-6 final score.
Jackie with the game programs
When I got to the arena this week, it was rookies Sarah and Jackie handling game program duties and they were both extremely excited to be back in action after a week away from Banditland. Like typical rookies, they had even more fun at the opener than they expected and that especially held true for Jackie, who had never been to a Bandits game before. After experiencing the excitement of opening night, she told me that she and her family were hooked.







After finishing up with them, it was up to the 100 level where Stephanie's line was holding court with lots of fans coming in. Karley was still beaming from the last game and MaKenzie was equally as happy with her Bandette of The Week feature. At the same time though, she also made a point to live up to my comment about keeping me on my toes. Mandy's line was at least as busy on the other side of the arena but after a few tries, I was able to get a chance to talk to Mandy about the Bandette of The Week series and how much longer we'll be waiting for the Bandits' site to get updated (she's hoping within the next week and a half at the latest.)
Deanna, Stephanie, MaKenzie, Karley, Jessica, and Jennifer
After we headed down to our seats, it wasn't too long before the Bandettes were assembling to get ready for the game. Erin had her little boy with her and he couldn't have been any more excited to get his picture taken with 16 beautiful young women at once. With little boys and girls, some are shy when meeting pro cheerleaders and we saw one example before the game when a mother wanted to bring her little girl over to meet the Bandettes but she was too shy to come over. Erin's little guy definitely does not suffer from shyness.
The Bandettes with a little big fan
One thing we, as bloggers for pro cheerleaders, wonder about when starting a new season working with a lot of rookies is how they'll react to the attention. Coming from high school and college dance teams, they don't get the attention that the pros do around the country and it might throw them off at 1st. In my experience, continuing to do as good a job as possible for these hard-working young ladies and the trust that the veterans and the coaches have in your work goes a long way with rookies. In the case of the 2016 Bandettes, many of the rookies seem just as comfortable with the coverage they're getting as the veterans are.
beautiful rookies Angela and Jessica
Bandettes in action during pregame
Amanda, Jackie, and Syidah waiting for the team to come out
Ti cheering on a goal
Mandy and Janelle in the 1st quarter
MaKenzie, Sarah, and Jessica cheering on a goal
MaKenzie is clearly excited
See all the pics at https://buffaloprocheerbuffalobandettes.shutterfly.com/pictures/8991
Next up for the Bandettes, they'll be hard at work the next couple of weeks with the Jr Bandettes getting them ready for the next home game on February 6 when New England comes to town. Hopefully, the Bandettes and Jr Bandettes will be cheering on a 3-1 Bandits team after the Bandits come home after their road trip to New England next weekend.