fall cheer faqs

Q – When does registration begin? When does it end?

A – Registration usually begins at the beginning of February. Registration will close depending on participant counts. We do not typically accept registration for cheer past August 15th.

Q – What ages can cheer with the Bulldogs?

A – Our cheer program can accept cheerleaders ages 5 through 13.

Q - How / Where do I register?

A – Registrations through the Sports Connect site. 

Find out more registration information HERE

Q – How is it determined which team my cheerleader will participate?

A – Cheer teams are based on the cheerleader’s age on July 31st, skill level, and experience. The team will be determined based on the Pop Warner National Age matrix along with, a skill assessment, and the availability on a team. The full Pop Warner Age matrix can be accessed here: https://www.popwarner.com/Default.aspx?tabid=1476223

Q – When does the Fall Season Start?

A- August 1st

Q - Where are you located?

A – We are located at the rear of Lakewood Ranch Park, 5350 Lakewood Ranch Blvd. If you turn heading west on Malachite Drive off of Lakewood Ranch Blvd, we are toward the end of the road and you can see our building on the south side of Malachite and Mustang Alley intersection.

Q – How much is registration?

A – Registration is $300. We offer a sibling discount of $25 for each child after the first registrant. We also offer a $25 Early Bird Discount for anyone who registers and pay by March 31st.

Q – What do I get with my registration?

A –    What is received will depend on which team. During most seasons, you receive a practice uniform, two bows, a backpack, shoes, and socks. You will also have use of a sideline cheer uniform as well as a competition top, all to be returned at the end of the season. Some teams may keep their sideline/comp uniform at the end of the season. 

Q – Do returners get priority registration?

A – Yes, returners who register by March 31st are granted priority registration. That means if there is availability on a team that they will be placed on a roster before a new registrant.

Q - When are practices?

A – Practices during the month of August are Monday through Friday 6-8pm. After Labor Day, practices are reduced to three days a week, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday.

Q – Do you ever practice other than Monday through Friday?

A – Yes, sometimes due to rainouts during the month of August, we may practice on a Saturday or Sunday.

Q – When/Where are the games played?

A – The games are played on Saturdays in the Tampa Bay area. We play teams in Manatee, Hillsborough, Pinellas, and DeSoto Counties. The fields are typically no more than 75 minutes away from our home field. The first game (Tiny Mites) begins at 9:00am and the games are played every two hours throughout the day.

Q – How many games are there and how long does the season typically last?

  A – Regular Season: There are 8 or 9 regular season games which usually run through the end of October. We usually have four or five home games and the rest are away. 

  Post Season:After the regular season games are over, there are Conference playoffs for the teams with the best record in their division. If a team wins the Conference Championship, they then go on to play in the Regional playoffs, and if they continue to win, at the end is the Regional Championship game.

Cheer Competitions: The local Cheer Competition is in late October or the beginning of November and is usually in Palmetto or Tampa. For the competitive teams (MM & above), If you place 1st or 2nd you will then move on to the Regional competition which is Thanksgiving weekend in Orlando. If you place 1stor 2nd at Regionals, then the next and final competition is at Disney’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando.

Q – What paperwork is required?

A – ● Original Certified Birth Certificate* (Not needed for prior year returners)

Current Year Player/Participant Contract

Current Year Medical/Physical Form

Current School YearReport Card (All 4 Qtrs)

*We will copy the birth certificate and return the original to you.

● We will need a picture for the info card, but we can take it and print it at the field during an in-person registration. Otherwise, it needs to be a picture with no other people, in focus, no more than two years old, around 2”x2”, and no sunglasses or hats allowed.

Q – How can I find out about important upcoming dates and events?

A – We post all our upcoming events including paperwork turn-ins, uniform fittings, equipment handout, coach meet & greets, etc. on our Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/EastManateeBulldogs/.

 We also have a calendar on our website where we will add important dates: https://eastmanateebulldogs.com/upcoming-dates

Q – Do your cheer coaches receive any formal training?

A – Yes, all of our cheer coaches receive the Southeast Pop Warner Cheer training as well as online YCADA (Youth Cheer & Dance Alliance) training.

Q – Are your volunteers background screened?

A – Yes, all of our coaches, board members, and team parents must pass a FDLE as well as a Multistate Criminal and Sex Offender background screen before they are allowed to fill their volunteer role.