Moving from the ‘Keep Austin Weird’ Streets of the South to the Big Apple can be a big change, but Lindsay of the Flight Crew was ready to take it on when she set way for her dream of cheering in the big league of the NFL. Everyone has dreams, but Lindsay persevered and fought for hers until she tackled it, and is now living it.
Lindsay started dancing at the young age of three years old. She was a studio dancer, which means she put in hours upon hours of practice time. She continued to dance for Austin’s Dance Elite, and stayed on the team through her senior year of high school. While in high school, she was also a part of the Hyde Park Prancers, and then proceeded on to Texas State University to be a Strutter, which would help to spring board her NFL career with the Jets.
The Jets have a cheerleading team, better known as the Flight Crew, which is the newest cheerleading squad in the NFL. They are directed by an alumna of the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleading squad, Denise Garvey, who was the one who voiced that the Jets were ready for a cheer team of their own. The Flight Crew has been in existence since 2007 and have truly built an incredible name for themselves. They are in high demand, especially this year, with Super Bowl XLVIII held in Met Life Stadium and The NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall. The Flight Crew has appearances being thrown at them left and right, and Lindsay says, “My favorite Super Bowl appearance was the Jets House. It was the Jets’ home base, and all of the fans loved when we were there.” While many fans were at the stadium others were able to celebrate right down the road from Super Bowl Boulevard, at this location. “The fans got to eat a delicious meal, dance to fun music, and meet some of the players and Flight Crew,” says Lindsay. What a great year to be a member of the Flight Crew.
Don’t let me confuse you by thinking Super Bowl and The NFL Draft are the full shebang for these girls, they work year round, participating in some incredible community outreach programs. Lindsay says, “one of my favorite appearances was the Alliance for Lupus Research walk last year. We helped lead the warm up for the participants and cheered on the walkers at the starting line.” The girls have some great opportunities to dive into their community, which has helped Lindsay call New York home. The Big Apple now home to Lindsay, and this year making history with the first ever cold-weather Super Bowl, I had to know how Lindsay was able to fight the cold of MetLife’s open-air stadium in the middle of winter. Lindsay told me, “When it gets cold, we get to wear our full-body flight suits. Not only are they cute, they are fleece lined and keep us warm. We use heating patches as well as hand and foot warmers when it gets really cold.” She says it’s still an adjustment, but I can tell the thrill of the game, dancing of the field and the fans keeps her blood pumping too!
This is Lindsay’s second year with the Flight Crew, but it’s not all she has going on. She is also an active member of the Junior League, where she spends three hours each week volunteering in the community. Lindsay says, “My committee puts together a winter ball each year, where we raise money to fund community outreach projects. My favorite community project to volunteer with each year is the Playground Improvement Project. We adopt a playground that is in poor condition and transform it into something beautiful that the community wants to use.” She also works full-time in the IT industry, plays piano, and participates in intramural sports. She is an inspiration on and off the field. You might think how could one handle such a busy schedule, but Lindsay says, “My schedule fits together like a puzzle. I don’t have a lot of free time, but I enjoy staying busy. I love to learn about a lot of different things, and I think it makes me who I am.”
The Flight Crew has done a fantastic job of building the team’s comradery. The team has welcomed her with open arms, by surprising Lindsay with the honor of being chosen as a Sunshine Girl this year. “There are three Sunshine Girls on the team. We are the girls who keep the team spirit up by celebrating birthdays, cheering up someone who has a bad day and coming up with fun activities throughout the year. It’s an honor to be chosen, and I’m having a great time so far,” says Lindsay.
From Texas to New York, Lindsay has done us proud. She now calls the big Apple home sweet home, and is a great tour guide to friends and family visiting. She even showed me around some of her favorite hot spots, like the pizza joint on the corner in Little Italy. There is a quote that reminds me of Lindsay and her journey, “The true secret of happiness lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life” by William Morris.
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