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'Catamount Spirit' Spreading Holiday Cheer in 2012

WCU's cheerleaders pause for a quick photo op while wrapping gifts for the Christmas Angels project. (Photos courtesy of WCU Cheer)

Dec. 11, 2012

Holiday Photo Gallery

Cullowhee, N.C. - As has become a tradition on-campus over the last few years, Western Carolina's spirit squads - the Catamount Cheerleaders and WCU Dance Team - combined to help spread Holiday cheer around the Jackson County community. The Cheerleaders sponsored both children and senior citizens again this holiday season.

WCU's Cheerleading squad adopted 26 local, less fortunate area children for the Christmas holiday season. The team combined to purchase clothes, toys, shoes, etc., for the children. Then, on Sunday, Dec. 2, the team held its annual "Christmas Angel" wrapping party at O'Malley's Bar & Grill in Sylva.

"Again having our team come together in this community outreach for children in our area, it was just awesome," said head coach Kim Cherry-Beck, who's son, Easton, even got in on the wrapping gifts for the adopted "angels."

Catamount Cheerleading would like to extend yet another huge and special, "Thank you" to Lynn Stanberry and O'Malley's for their continued support of WCU Cheer.

"The Sylva landmark has hosted our squad's `wrapping party' for many years, and we are very thankful," said Cherry-Beck.

Three days later, on Wednesday, Dec. 5, the "Catamount Spirit" (WCU Cheer and Dance) came together in historic Reid Gymnasium to fill boxes with non-perishable items for that will be delivered to senior citizens in our community through Mountain Projects.

"The team made the decision to sponsor less fortunate senior citizens and children again this year as opposed to buying each other gifts. There are so many people out there in need, and it's great that our team chose to make a difference and help them," said Assistant Cheerleading Coach Eddie Wells, who again organized the community service efforts through his involvement with Mountain Projects. "I am so proud of our Catamount Spirit family for stepping up and making a positive impact in the community to help those that are less fortunate."

Mountain Projects is a community based non-profit organization, founded in 1965 as a Community Action Agency, that provides vital services to the elderly, disadvantaged and general public in Western North Carolina. For more information about the services of Mountain Projects, visit