ARKANSAS, USA — For many Arkansans, Friday night means high school football, and soon, spirit teams will be able to join their teams on the road.
England School District was the first to announce it Friday after receiving word from the Arkansas Activities Association.
Earlier in the summer, the AAA banned spirit squads from traveling to cut back on the spread of COVID-19.
Some may argue that it's not a sport, but for the ones cheering, it's their passion.
"I feel like, as cheerleaders we are supposed to bring the spirit to away games,” said one England cheerleading captain. “So, we are very excited about this. "I know some of the football boys missed us, especially since some of the people in England can't go to the away games."
England High School Cheer Coach Victoria Lantz said she has fought hard for her team, keeping in contact with the AAA and has helped support this mission along the way.
"I'm happy, if you can't tell,” said Lantz. “I'm so happy for these girls because they deserve it. They really do. I know all the other school girls deserve it. They’ve worked so hard this summer for these moments.”
Many other districts have not decided if their spirit squads will move forward by traveling, but Lantz hopes eventually they'll follow suit.
She said her girls will treat away games just like home games by following safety guidelines by the ADH.
“We don't have to be in a group the entire time,” said Lantz. “We cheered at our first home game 12-feet apart. We have 16 girls, so imagine being spread out 12-feet each. That's a long sideline. But, they did it, and they did amazing with it."
Spirit squads, including cheer and dance teams, can go on the road for games starting Monday.