Fifth BC Stutter named to Kilgore Rangerettes
Nestled in the modest sized town of Kilgore, Texas is an organization that is steeped in history and tradition that has also become world renown. Becoming a part of this group is not only a difficult task but also an honor.
Qualifying to be one of the Kilgore Rangerettes is an accomplishment met by only a few young ladies yet for the fifth time a former Bridge City Strutter has made the famed group. Jordyn Ewing, 2011 graduate of Bridge City, has become the newest from this area high school to hold a coveted position with the ground breaking group that drill teams world wide use as a pattern for their own.
This past Friday, after a week filled with auditions, training and judging Jordyn found name on the sign during the eventful Sign Drop, along with 35 other young women. The 72 member team is composed of 36 incoming Freshmen and 36 returning Sophomores. It is known for it straight, high field kicks, jumping splits and military precision.
The uniform colors of red, white and blue with the white western styled hat, white leather forearm sleeves and wide belts has changed little since their inception by Gussie Nell Davis in 1939. They were the first Drill team of their kind, and hold an esteemed position of traditional values and excellence.
Still, Jordyn didn’t start out her dance career with the Rangerettes being her end goal however she did start dance young, “I started taking dance when I was two,” she states with a broad smile, “as soon as I was eligible!”
She has since danced almost 17 years at Taylor’s Dance Studio and has taken many of the disciplines that, consequently, helped her make the Rangerette team.
“I took ballet, of course, ballet is a foundation. Once you get that the other forms of dance are structured around it. Ballet helps you with your technique in the other areas.”
Jordyn goes on to explain she additionally was a part of jazz, ,hip-hop, lyrical and tap.
This hard working ethic will certainly play a large role in her two year stint with the Rangerettes. The way of life for a Rangerette is very much that of a military school. When in uniform they are to conform to certain rules and regulations.
This strictness, which begins during try outs, insures excellence on and off the field as representatives of the group. Their hair style, lip color, even verbal responses are mandated and recognized.
So choosing to place one’s self in their control for two years has to be a true desire. The rewards of which are substantial including performances at presidential inaugurations, and annual performances at the Cotton Bowl.
“I am not going to be a Rangerette because I am going to Kilgore. I am going to Kilgore to be a Rangerette,” explains Jordyn, “I didn’t know if I wanted to go. I didn’t want to go just because someone else wanted me to but only if I chose to. When two of our former member came to recruit I just got excited. I realized I really wasn’t ready to give up the kicking and being on the field.”
Her ultimate plans are not in the arena of dance but Wildlife Biology so her thoughts turned to how and make both a reality. She will use her two years at Kilgore College wisely by following a course of study that will coincide with classes needed to advance to her chosen area of study when transferring to SFA her Junior year.
Jordyn has had a step up on some of the 90 girls that competed for the 36 Freshmen positions. Along with her dance she was a four year veteran on the Bridge City Strutters, where she was a 2 year officer, serving as a Junior Lieutenant and as Captain her senior year.
While a high school freshmen she high kicked her way onto the National Kick Company and won Miss All-American High Kick.
Far from the Rockette’s style of can-can kicks, this type of move is executed with locked knees and pointed toes with the knee touching the tip of the nose and the body remaining in a straight line from beginning to end.
But even with her love and ability to be apart of the demands that come with becoming a part of such a worthy team, her real desire lies not in so much what they do but how they do it. She is seeking out to be a part of excellence and history.
“It seems today, people in my generation seem less focused on doing their best. They don’t really have a passion about anything they do. They just do enough to get by. Even when I was captain I tried to help teach the under classmen to find something they were passionate about and focus their energies in that direction. To really give it their best.
“People just seem so scattered and unfocused. Like it is okay to just barely get something done. That’s not what I want.”
Her excitement is evident, her passion sure. The process was daunting and yet exactly what she hoped it would be. It is what she expected from the drill team that has been the structure around which thousands of others have been built their own paradigm.
In three short weeks she will move into Gussie Nell Davis Residence with her roommate for the next two years, Bethany Metreyeon. She will perform with red lip stick, pulled back curls and an unfaltering smile.
She will travel to the 70th Memorial Anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor and any where that is mandated. She will kick and study and enjoy becoming a part of a very exclusive group of alumni.
“It’s a pretty big deal, they have their own museum,” she says brightly. “Some day I will be walking around the museum saying, “See there I am. That’s my group.”