Juneau Jumpers ready to show their stuff

Posted: Wednesday, April 30, 2003

Juneau residents have one last chance to see the renowned Juneau Jumpers jump-rope squad in action this week before the team gears up for national competition.

The Jumpers are holding a community show on Friday beginning at 7 p.m. at the Glacier Valley Elementary School gym. Tickets will be sold at the door and are $5 for adults, $3 for children and students or $10 for a family.

The show, which will last about 45 minutes to an hour, will feature about 50 total routines ranging from solo efforts to large-group events. Speed demonstrations and glow-rope routines will be some of the featured events.

It will be the team's last community show before many of its members head to the USA Jump Rope National Championships in Orlando, Fla., in mid-June.

The Juneau Jumpers team, in its 18th year, has 24 jumpers this year. The Jumpers - five boys and 19 girls - range from third-graders to seniors in high school.

"We've added nine new jumpers (this season)," coach Scott Johnson said. "It's a strong group, and improving all the time."

Juneau Jumpers Community Performance

When: 7 p.m. Friday, May 2.

Where: Glacier Valley School gym.

Cost: $5 adults, $3 children/students; $10 families.

At a regional tournament in Sitka on March 1, many Jumpers qualified for the national championship. Earlier this month, the team traveled to Nome to perform and conduct workshops for students from that town and five other villages.

Each Jumper will perform in at least four routines in Friday's show; some will be in as many as 15. Katie Conway, an eighth-grader at Floyd Dryden Middle School, and Laura Knapp, a Juneau-Douglas High School sophomore, have each been on the team for five years.

Conway said she enjoys being on the team for the shows and the travel; Knapp said she appreciates the great exercise jumping rope provides. Both said their favorite parts of the show are the solo routines.

"Everyone is watching you - you only," Conway said. "You're in the spotlight."

"You try to do your best, and try to get the most applause," Knapp said.

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