COVID-19, along with the accompanying nationwide upheaval the deadly virus brought with it to the education system, meant a change in student’s lives many adults may not fully be able to understand with the exclusion of those who work in the food and entertainment industry. But with entertainment and ‘extras’ put on hold for concern of spreading the virus via gathering in big numbers, some students have decided to do what they could to keep school spirit alive.

Despite not having a coach, Trinidad Cheer Captains Tea Gutierrez and Nellie Perez said they pulled together what they could to get the team going anyway in preparation for fall; but more than that, to give them something positive to focus on.

“It’s our senior year,” said Gutierrez, “and we don’t want to see this team go away no matter what happens. It means too much to us.”

In the spirit of continuing to do what they’re able, with some restrictions lifted the seniors of the team decided to hold a small banquet last Saturday, June 27, with just the team to announce varsity cheerleaders, captains, and co-captains.

“Typically, if we did have a coach, we would have already had our uniforms ordered, cheers already completed, and ready for football season,” said Nellie Perez. “So far, on our own we’ve taught them the cheers and measured them for uniforms so we’ll hopefully get those ordered soon.”

Senior Captain Tea Gutierrez said her mother was helping the students with things that needed to be done to keep the girls on track. But without an actual supervisor from the school, some of what they are allowed to do is, as of right now, still limited.

“We need to work on stunting and get into stunt groups but we need a supervisor for that,” said Perez.

As of Saturday, Gutierrez said she had emailed and called Trinidad High School staff and left messages several times but had yet to hear back from anyone, adding that with everything going on she would continue to be patient.

Both captains said they have continued to try to keep up with the things they are able to do and “focus on the positives,” said Perez. They are currently working on organizing fundraising activities that they could do that fit with restrictions currently in place.

“We’re thinking about having a carwash soon since we can’t sell food or anything right now,” said Gutierrez. “We can also accept sponsors if anyone was interested and stuff like that.”

Perez said that a big reason they are motivated to keep the team rolling was to hopefully inspire the others to be leaders as well.

“We’d like to teach our younger girls that they can take initiative into their own hands and start doing things themselves,” said Perez. “We took matters into our own hands and got our cheer team together.”

While the future of what school instruction in the fall will hold is still uncertain, it’s certainly uplifting to hear that local students are doing what they can to keep the Miner spirit alive.

For more information or to contribute to the team’s efforts, contact the girls at 719-680-9328.

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