We are grateful to rent facilities in our communities to give back to the dancers in our communities!
We have volunteers who have decades of experience working and volunteering with children of all ages!
Uniforms, supplies, competitions, programs and more, we scope out who's the best so we can give the best experience for your dancer!
50% payment is needed to secure your spot on our teams, and the other half will be due in June. We anticipate teams to max out quickly, please check our website and Facebook page for updates on which classes will be filling and closing registration on once we've hit our max.
Miss Catherine, Founder and Director
Miss Catherine was born and raised in Chicago and has 3 decades of dance training from the heart of the City and the surrounding suburbs. Since the age of 3 she has been studying dance, performing all over the Chicagoland suburbs, competing for several years and sharing her love of dance with her community for over a decade. She has taught at park districts, dance studios in the Chicagoland suburbs and implemented a worship dance program in Lake Zurich. She has spent 20 years working with inner city youth in the Kilbourn Park area, while also working with children in the suburbs, and for several years as a Director for an after-school youth program for children 3rd-6th grade in the City serving children in the Kilbourn Park/Humboldt Park area. She has worked in the field of Accounting for almost 15 years and has a passion for dedication and commitment. “Ingenuity” is her motto!
She was accepted at the age of 3 to study under Mary Lou Troumanhouser (a student of Tommy Sutton), the former owner of The Dance Academy in Chicago. Since then she has performed all over Chicagoland, some of those places including The Copernicus Center, Navy Pier, The Children’s Museum, the opening of the Norwood Park Historical Society, and The Portage Theater. She won top in dance routines for Waucondafest has Talent in 2011, and was given the opportunity to perform at the Pritzker Theater in 2011 and Carnegie Hall. She has performed at festivals and shows all over the Chicagoland suburbs and competed with high honors in dance competitions with companies such as Starlight, Rainbow Connection, Footlites, Starpower and StarQuest, with the majority of those competing in Tap. She has studied Tap extensively (studying the sought-after Tommy Sutton curriculum), Jazz, Ballet, Pointe, Modern, Lyrical and Hip Hop. After studying for over a decade at The Dance Academy in Chicago she moved to the Barrington/Wauconda area, and immediately got involved in the communities around her. She taught all forms of dance for several years at the Island Lake Park District and studied/taught at the former Dancer’s Pointe in Island Lake. At the same time, she traveled extensively to Chicago to study under teachers at The Joffrey Ballet, Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Lou Conte Dance Studio, and several others. She has taken innumerable classes and workshops with the best for Tap. Her favorite teachers to study tap from have been Tre Dumas III, Lane Alexander, Phil Brooks and JaBowen Dixon. She has studied all forms of dance under teachers such as Mary Lou Troumanhouser, Jeanne Sok, Kathy DeMaira, Inaside Chicago Dance’s Nell Heflin, Dionna Pridgeon, Chicago Dance Crash’s Chris Courtney, Step Africa!’s Jakari Sherman, Chicago Movement Collective’s Melinda Wilson, private lessons with JaBowen Dixon and many more. She enjoys contributing to the Chicago Human Rhythm Project and Dance Accepts Everyone, studies Music Theory in her free time, and loves to add to her extensive dance curriculum.
Continued study is the mark of a true artist. Performing is fun but the hard work behind the scenes is what she truly enjoys. Miss Catherine loves to bring the latest styles to her students, so she brings in amazing teachers to give the newest and best ideas, continues to study from her favorite teachers, taking workshops, networking with successful teachers and directors, and continuing her growth as a teacher and director, but also as a dancer. She truly enjoys serving the community and has been blessed to move into the 6th successful Season of our program. Not only is she excited to pass her love of dance to the 3rdgeneration of dancers in her family, she is excited to continue giving back to the community and has a passion to work with children and adults alike, training them in dance and expression and having them carry that with them through the years to open doors for them as they grow.
Miss Christine, Head Coach
We are proud to have Miss Christine as our Head Coach since our founding in 2018. She has been dancing since she was 5 years old, starting her training in the heart of Chicago at The Dance Academy. After moving to the Barrington/Wauconda area she studied at the Village of Island Lake’s Dance program and the former Dancer’s Pointe in Island Lake. She has studied Poms, Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Hip Hop. She was a cheerleader in the Wauconda Bulldogs Cheer program and an All-Star Cheerleader at Cheer Fusion. She has danced and competed with the former Premier Poms in Barrington, and has coached Rec Cheer and Poms. She helped found the Wauconda Bulldogs Men of Cheer and their choreography (2012-2017), and in addition to doing choreography for our Bulldogs Spirit Teams she jumped right in and choreographed our first Bulldogs Spirit Poms and Dance Parent/Family Routine for our Windy City Bulls Game performances in 2018 and 2019! She has brought our Teams over 20 Championship wins, and a State Championship win in the short time we have been in the community! She has been a Pre-K/K Teacher for 3 years and currently is in school to finish her ECE Director’s Degree. She works at a local, family-owned business in the heart of Wauconda, lives in Wauconda, and loves the lake life and volunteering in the community! We are so excited for our 7th Season with Miss Christine, she loves meeting all our new dancers, making our girls laugh, and bringing her passion for teaching children and love of dance to everyone!
Miss Kelly, Assistant Coach
Miss Nicole, Assistant Coach
Miss Nicole has been dancing since she was 3 years old, and has studied the styles of Ballet, Hip-Hop, Jazz, Lyrical, Tap and Poms. She has 4 years of experience being on competitions teams and 2 years in high school as well on poms teams. While attending the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, she continued studying dance and taking classes there as well. At UW-Milwaukee she was also part of a Dance Living Learning Community (LLC). The Dance LLC was a community of students living in the same area that were majoring or minoring in dance. They took classes together and collaborated to perfect routines. Besides coaches our girls in dance, she has a 5-year-old of her own who has been on the Princess Poms team now for 2 years. She has worked with children including working as a teacher’s assistant with students who have IEPs, volunteering at a horse shelter that helps children and adults with disabilities learn how to ride, and volunteering at a local preschool. We absolutely LOVE having Miss Nicole coach our dancers!
Open to all girls and boys in public, private and homeschools in all communities, Bulldogs Spirit Poms and Dance is a non-profit organization promoting the importance of sportsmanship, commitment, determination, teamwork, self-confidence, enthusiasm and team spirit, a passion for the art of dance, and the value of community service in our area youth.
"Dance Big, Dream Big, Care Big!"
Q. When was Bulldogs Spirit Poms and Dance founded?
A. The groundwork and funds were being laid out in 2017, and finally implemented in 2018.
Q. What grades/ages is this program reaching out to?
A. In Fall 2018 we had Princess Poms, and in Spring 2019 we quadrupled in numbers to add ages 4-8th Grade. We are proud to have children from seven different towns from surrounding areas for the last 6 Seasons to come together to learn dance and have a great time! We love having girls from towns all over coming to enjoy dance and performing! We plan on expanding even more in Fall 2021!
Q. What info do you have on requirements like games and practices?
A. We will not be dancing/performing for any weekly games. We will be participating in community events and performing at special events. On top of getting the chance to compete and learn with fantastic volunteers in the community with an amazing amount of dance/poms/performing backgrounds, we want the girls to have the opportunity to perform. As for practices they will be indoors. For the start of Fall 2020 we started outside due to Covid protocols. We have partnered with Volo Sportsplex, Village of Island Lake, Wauconda Post 911, Wauconda Township, local schools and other facilities in past/present for our practices.
Q. Who are you members with?
A. The IRCA and Wauconda Chamber of Commerce, since the very beginning of our organization!
Q. Who are you working with for uniforms/dresses and spirit items? We want quality!
A. And you will get it! :) We partner with several big name distributors to get the best quality at the best price!
Q. Will there a be a no-bullying policy?
A. Absolutely. We have a no-tolerance policy, and the parent/guardian who is registering their child will sign this confirming that they, AND their child, are aware that if this policy is not followed, they will be removed from the team with no refund. These will be teams that are encouraging, uplifting and working together. We are a no-drama, no-bullying, no-clique organization, and want our dancers to get the best experience out of Bulldogs Spirit Poms and Dance. Save the drama for Dance Moms! ;)
Q. How do you plan to keep prices so low?
A. We are a non-for-profit. That is what we stand on, and we are not going to charge any more than what is needed to get the best quality items for your girls, to go to competitions with a wonderful organization, and our volunteers are just that - volunteers. They get no money, no commission; they truly enjoy giving back to the community. Most of them have grown up doing this and it is their passion. Most of our volunteers have professions in the community and all of them work with youth, and want the girls in the surrounding communities to make friends, have a no-drama, bully-free zone that they can enjoy dance, perform, and learn how to become the best they can be, inside and OUTSIDE of the studio.
We will be relying on donations and sponsors to cover any additional costs we may need. All the info of what it costs you is on our flyer, as we are very determined to keep all info open and transparent to anyone who has questions. Any donations are gratefully accepted. And remember, if you bring in a $500 sponsor your registration fee is waived!
We do not offer refunds as all of our expenses are paid for immediately at the beginning of the seasons.
Q. Is dance experience required for your program?
A. No, we are mixed-level teams that are rec.
Q. What is taught at class?
A. Foundations of Jazz and Ballet (Cecchetti Method) are a must, so that will be a big part of class along with learning their routine. The little ones will have more activities in class such as tumbling, learning rhythm/music with instruments and much more. In Spring we do Tap and Jazz for Princess Poms (for this Fall 2020 we are doing Tap and Jazz) and in Fall we do Ballet and Jazz.
Q. Are all the events that the dancers can go to required?
A. No, but we hope they take advantage of being out in the community to perform and give back! We want our dancers to have as many opportunities as possible, we want to have a lasting impact on the community when we give back AND wonderful memories/experiences for our dancers!
Q. Scheduling - How does it work?
A. We take care of everything! Parents run around a LOT, and we keep our schedule as consistent and up-front as possible. We don't like surprises (unless it's fun event or two!). We try to plan the whole season's class schedule (and most of our events) ahead of time so it's ready to give to you when you register your dancer. We use a few different facilities throughout the season to help with costs (this has been tough during Covid!), so we want to make sure parents have all the info immediately. We know parents are tired of last-minute changes, and entire weekends wrapped around activities. We don't want that either! We want you to have all the info you need so you can plan accordingly. The only thing that could be "last minute" is a special event or two we may want to sign up for, and those are always fun, but those are optional to our dancers. (Most of our events are discussed and signed up for before the season starts) But we do hope they take advantage of them, we want to give the All-Star experience without the All-Star cost! :)
Q. "Spirit Booster Events", how does that work?
A. Those are our special events we do throughout the year. Some events will become a staple from year to year, and some events our staff find as the year goes on. We have staff that have been working on special events and working in the community with children for decades, so you can be sure we are ALWAYS keeping our eyes out for new and exciting events for our dancers! ;) Our most favorite one is performing for the Windy City Bulls :)
Q. Do we need to fundraise/pay for fundraiser costs or "buyouts"?
A. NO. As of now, our registration costs only cover a small part of rent and insurance, and the rest has been covered by donations and fundraisers. We try to give a nice gift/prize for the dancer that sells the most items though! We are careful which fundraisers we choose (if any); we want to pick ones that have useful items and the less the kids have to sell, the easier for the parents ;) We've all been there! These fundraisers are also ALWAYS OPTIONAL. Your registration covers uniforms, bow, poms, trophies, competition fees and much more. And what's GREAT is your child brings home their uniform/costume to keep, along with a bow and poms. We're not going to charge you a fee and keep the uniforms/costumes. No fees, keeping uniform/poms/bow, practices that are easy on your schedule and at the same time keeping the quality! We've heard you and we want to deliver! :)
Q. What level are these classes?
A. These are mixed-level (multi-level) classes. Since we are a NON-TRYOUT team, we may have basic beginners to advanced. We do our best to highlight those skills in routines as best as we can. This depends on the size of the group, choreography, skill levels, etc. As the Season progresses we may add in harder tricks/skills/patterns in our routines. Even though we are rec category, we have commitment agreements that need to be signed and followed.
Q. Where do you go for competitions?
A. We have a few organizations we like to work with and we always take feedback from the parents as to which ones they like the most. Of course, winning is NOT always everything, we want our girls most importantly to learn, make friends, and grow closer together as a team while having fun. But we do like to switch it up and try a few different competition organizations and sometimes we have opportunities to add more throughout the year if the parents like. Each organization has something different to offer, and we like to have our dancers enjoy as many of them as possible!
Your support and contributions will enable us to meet our goals and improve our organization so we can better serve our
Bulldogs Spirit Poms and Dance is a 501(c)(3) non-profit serving the community and is not affiliated with any school district, dance institution, park district, youth sports league, one town or township. Serving the Port Barrington, Wauconda, Island Lake, McHenry, Volo, Lakemoor, Lake Barrington, Crystal Lake, Cary, and surrounding areas. Open to all public, private and homeschooled girls and boys in the area.