Sparkettes of Montana Seeking New Fundraiser Location - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Sparkettes of Montana Seeking New Fundraiser Location

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It takes time to get to the level of twirling flaming batons and the results can be dazzling.

The Sparkettes are the premier baton twirlers of Great Falls and their accomplishments can be seen by the numerous trophies on the shelf in their practice facility. Their youngest members hope to win one someday. At least 5-year-old Isabelle seems to think so.

"Cuz you practice and you get better," says Isabelle. "Thank you keep doing it and then you keep getting better and better."

But it might be tougher for twirlers like little girls like isabelle to keep getting "better and better" after October. The Sparkettes biggest fundraiser of the year is in jeopardy. They put on a haunted house every October, but this year the Fire Marshall says the building where they have the event, the FFA Beef Barn at the Fairgrounds, is a fire hazard. If the Sparkettes can’t find a place to have the haunted house, the program will be in limbo.

"The Fire Marshall told us there is not a building in Great Falls that meets the fire codes," says lead instructor Laura Kirby-Wilson. "So that we would not be able to have a Haunted House in Great Falls this year. It’s our main fundraiser for the year. We raise over $13,000 usually. Which pays for the rent on our building and the insurance for the girls to twirl."

"We do have girls that come in, that can’t always pay for everything," says CMR Junior Gia Klinker, who has been with the Sparkettes for eleven years. "So we also have to help them out a lot. So the fundraiser also helps with that because it contributes to the girls."

Gia Klinker has seen some of the younger girls go through amazing transformations.

"We have girls that come in and they will hide behind their parents and they won’t talk to anybody and they’ll run away from us," says Klinker. "Three weeks out there they’re twirling better than half of the girls that are big and they’re wanting to do what us big girls do. They’re like, 'I want to be that fire baton twirler when I’m older.'"

But for the younger Sparkettes to say that, they’ll have to find a place to have their fundraiser.

So that this ring of fire can continue to come full circle.
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