skip navigation

Reigning Champs Are Elite In the Community Too

By North Shore Elite Cheer, 09/12/17, 11:15AM CDT


In just under three weeks, Zion based North Shore Elite Cheer will kick off its eighth competitive season as the reigning IRCA Spring National Champions. Focused on athletic achievement, building life skills and encouraging community responsibility, this program is no stranger to giving back and making a difference. Powered entirely by volunteers, NSE offers several activities through the year for athletes in grades K-HS.

North Shore Elite Athletes are encouraged to excel in their communities beyond the classroom and competition. Service projects are a regular part of their activity year round having an impact on their community in Lake County and beyond. They have raised nearly $4,000 for the American Cancer Society since 2014 participating in the Kenosha Relay for Life. Each year during the Martin Luther King Jr Holiday, athletes and their families volunteer at the Abiding Love Ministries Food Pantry sorting food and shelter supplies.

According to Executive Director Jennessa Lystlund, “ Giving back to our community is a very important part of our mission”. This fall each of the 3 teams will be participating in individual service projects of their choosing. Lystlund hopes this will help the athletes to really connect to the service work they are doing even more so than the annual projects the entire organization participates in.

NSE has once again been selected as an organization of Character and will participate in the 4th Annual Community of Character Walk on Thursday September 14, 2017. They will be featured performers alongside the Razzle Dazzles and Elite Striders Drill team.

Talented and hard working, they are much more than just a youth sports program. All North Shore Elite Cheerleaders are expected to work hard in the classroom, in the gym and in the community. NSE teaches good sportsmanship, discipline and love of athletics, all while encouraging scholastic excellence and proper balance between school and sport. During the 2016-17 school year nearly 70% of all athletes were recognized as Honor Roll students. NSE High School aged athletes and volunteers, receive mentoring in leadership, resume building, job searching and interviewing skills to help prepare them for their future in the working world.

NSE is setting its sights on a successful journey back to the top of the podium. This past spring, their Senior squad, made up of middle school aged athletes, finished their season by ousting 36 other teams in a bracketed tournament to become the reigning 2017 IRCA Cheer Madness Champs. Coached by ZBTHS grad and former cheerleader Jasmine Phillips, the seniors never backed down even when facing off High School aged teams.

Their fall teams began training in July, practicing 12 hours a week and even on weekends preparing for competition. All three teams will be in action October 1, 2017 at Dundee-Crown HS in Carpentersville, IL. They are all looking to once again punch their ticket to the 10th Annual IRCA State Championships at the Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates, IL.

Are You Ready To Be Elite? Registration will soon be underway for the Annual Cheer Academy. This seven week training academy is focused on cheer and tumbling, includes life skills activities and a service project. The 2018 Academy begins January 13th on Friday evenings and Saturday mornings. Registration will open November 1st. Check out their Facebook page or for more information.

North Shore Elite Cheerleading is a competitive cheerleading program sponsored by the Northern Illinois Youth Sports Organization (NIYSO), a 501c(3) based in Zion, IL. They were established in 2010 and are members of the Illinois Recreational Cheerleading Association (IRCA), the largest youth athletic association in the state of Illinois. Contact them at for more info or check out their Facebook for news on upcoming events.