If you don't know a majorette, now you do. I was a young majorette for one summer. What made me think about those days in the mid-sixties was a post I read by Laura, “What’s not to like about parades?” Parades are fun, especially if you are watching one…
When you think of a majorette, might it be the cheerleader type? Athletic enough for high stepping and baton twirling? I do.
They’re glamorous and love competition suits with glitter, even back in the 60's. Most of them are beautiful young ladies.
Troupes are dedicated to performing and training for many years that sometimes takes them through college.
The NC Tarheels marching band and majorettes. Wow. Marching bands always thrill me. Oh, I just love parades.
Back to 1966 in a southwest Baltimore low-income neighborhood called Lakeland. Other than Girl Scouts, I don't recall organized sports for girls. My friend Debbie and I were thrilled to get a flyer in our mailboxes about majorette training. We joined and practiced with a group of twenty or thirty girls for several months before parade season started. I still remember being measured for my own “real” baton.
I’m the chubby one on the left with chipmunk teeth before braces. Debbie was thin as a rail and never marched in unison. She just couldn’t do it. Our outfits were homemade and I remember thinking how dull we looked. We saw other troupes that had glitter on theirs and some of them didn’t wear Clydesdale boots, instead they wore white Keds and boy, were they talented! We didn’t care too much because we were twirling and learned our routines to perfection until we were on parade in front of the judges' stand, of course.
What did I get from the experience? A few good memories and lots of laughs right now. It’s funny, I remember Debbie, of course, but I don’t remember the leaders or trainers at all. Nor do I remember forming any lasting friendships. The “Lakelandettes” lived for one summer and then, without good-byes, we went our separate ways.
Most memorable: SICK FEET. WATER BLISTERS THE SIZE OF SILVER DOLLARS, AND BANDAIDS. ALL SUMMER LONG.
I still twirl. I love it ;-)