2020 Grant Recipient
Great Lakes Twirling Academy
Based in Otisville, Michigan, the Great Lakes Twirling Academy (GLTA) has been offering enriching classes for children of all ages for more than two decades. Classes include Preschool Music and Motion and Tumbling Tots, as well as recreational and competitive baton twirling.
"Our goal is to provide each participant with a positive, growing experience," said GLTA Coach Jodi Wright. "Through experience in our academy, children will learn more than just a talent, they'll learn confidence, self-discipline and team work, with top certified instructors teaching the skills that will help them grow and succeed through life."
GLTA twirlers perform regularly at local parades, school assemblies and community events throughout mid-Michigan and as far away as the Miss America Parade, Disney World and Universal Studios. Many GLTA athletes are feature twirlers at local high schools and have gone on to become collegiate twirlers at Saginaw Valley State University, Bowling Green State University and Western Michigan University. GLTA athletes also compete at state, regional, national and international competitions and hold many championship titles.
GLTA also hosts a "Reading Rocks Campaign" where they do twirling performances at local elementary schools in conjunction with March Reading Month activities. In addition, the group has developed a plan to offer an inner-city twirling program, once COVID-19 restrictions allow.
"The Reading Rocks Campaign is a unique project that supports the importance of reading in our schools while sharing the sport of baton twirling," said John Chamberlain, Vice President of USTA. "The inner city twirling program will promote the sport of baton twirling to a very important demographic."