by Mary DeLuca
If you’ve been to a home football game you’ve probably seen that one girl around half time that twirls the batons. Have you ever stopped to think who even is that? Her name is Celina Wheeler better known as “Paris.” She got that nickname from a friend who was writing a story and happened to want to use Celina as a character, but just called her “Paris.” Celina wants to visit Paris when she is older.
Paris got a flyer from her former school about twirling lessons around where she lived. She was sceptical about actually trying it, but her mother pushed her and told her “if you don’t like it, you can just finish the season and leave.”
Paris ended up loving it, but Grandville does not have a twirler team. The closest thing to it would be color guard or someone within the band. When Paris first started out, she talked to them both and they turned her down, but that didn’t stop her. She went to the athletic director, Mr.Parsons, expecting him to say no too, but he didn’t. He told her she could twirl at home football games, and her first time performing was at a homecoming game at halftime.
Mr. Parsons told her to get a routine down and make it good, and that’s what she did.
“I remember being unbelievably nervous I waited out on the field for them to call my name so I could start. “Besides lowkey freaking out, I was shaking with excitement. It was so overwhelming. The huge crowd– every seat was filled on the bleachers. It was way too late to back out, so I took a deep breath and got into my starting position waiting for the song, “Wings” by Little Mix, to start. And during the whole routine moving around, getting lost in the music… you just get out of your head. I don’t even know my thought process during it. I just focus on if I’m catching my tricks or not. It might have not been my best show, that game, but it was an amazing experience for my first time and I was more than happy to do it.”
Paris went on to explain she’s the only one that’s been a twirler at Grandville and she’d love to take someone under her wing and teach her everything she knows so that when she graduates next year, someone can take her place. But no one has really showed much interest in it. But her younger sister, Sophia Wheeler, might do it in a couple years when she in high school.
But until then, it is just Paris as the Grandville twirler, and she is more than proud to do it.
“It takes guts to go up by yourself in front of a huge crowd and give them all you got I have mad respect for her” an anonymous student said.