Seven local girls are part of a squad of 200 that will jump rope in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City Thursday.
The girls, selected from a field of more than 600 jump-ropers across the nation who applied to be part of the team, are members of the Sol Jumpers, a competitive jump-rope team based in Santa Clara, coached by Michelle Fongson, a world champion and former member of the team.
The girls, including Kelsey Moran, a sophomore at Los Altos High School, have been practicing for their performance on the tracks of local high schools for up to seven hours every week since being selected last summer to join the routine. Members of The Heartbeats Jump Rope Team in Medina, Ohio, choreographed the routine and distributed it to the local jumpers via YouTube.
A number represents each member of the squad’s location in the formation at different times during the performance. Coordinating the routine is difficult until the girls arrive in New York. They must be able not only to perform the routine flawlessly and in synchronization with one another, but also perform it continuously for the entire 3.5-mile parade route while moving forward.
“I’ve always wanted to go to New York,” said Moran, who started jump-roping when she was 10 years old and has participated in three national competitions. “I’ll get to meet a lot of jump-ropers from across the country.”
In addition to learning new routines for the parade, the girls have been selling chocolate and hosting fundraising activities to generate the estimated $2,500 per person needed to underwrite expenses for the trip.
The parade is scheduled to air 9 a.m. Thursday. Check local TV listings for details.