MADILL — It’s often been said Disneyland is considered the “Happiest Place on Earth.”

MADILL — It’s often been said Disneyland is considered the “Happiest Place on Earth.”

For Madill High School cheerleaders Showna Cooper, Bailey Stone, Brooklyn Mason and Matisan Fulgham, during the week of Nov. 30 through Dec. 3, they could have been known as some of the happiest cheerleaders on earth.

The four Lady Wildcats cheer squad members were among a group of 800 cheerleaders from across the United States who were invited to attend the Varsity Spirit Spectacular at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

Participants are invited to attend the event by invitation only, and must have attended the UCA or NCA summer camp in 2017, as well as either be a captain, co-captain or an All-American selection.

But before the MHS cheer members could enjoy the lights and sounds of the magical kingdom, they first had to put in lots of hard work, most of which began before they even set foot in Orlando.

“It might be just a two-minute routine to some people, but it actually takes hours and hours of practice for these girls to learn the steps, counts and motions to something like that,” Madill coach Nicole Erwin said. 

“Something like this takes a lot more work than people realize.”

Nicole added while she’s had Madill cheer members represent the squad at Walt Disney World in Orlando in years past, this year was a little more special since she got to take in the experience in person. 

“It was pretty cool to have my four girls participating and going out there doing their thing,” she said. “This time I was able to go and see the whole process and see how everything was put together. It was really special for me.”

For Showna Cooper, the trip was more than about getting to visit Disney World for the first time, it was about getting to partake in a very special experience.

“It was an amazing experience for me and was super fun,” she said. “We practiced really hard and put a lot of work into the entire routine. I really wanted to go because I had never been there (Disney World) before, and I’m really glad I got to go.”

Brooklyn added she loved getting to perform in front of the big crowd, which included numerous little kids, as well as getting to take in the rides across the park.

“It was fun to watch the little kids look at us as we performed,” she said. “We basically practiced and worked from the moment they released the video for our routine on Oct. 20 until the day we arrived. For me getting to spend time with my friends and family was special, along with getting to ride the rides for the first time and see everything.”

The event capped off a solid year for the Madill cheer program, which included having four members named to the All-Ardmoreite cheer squad, as well as three members named to the All-Region team, which included Brooklyn Erwin and Bailey Stone.

“Just the whole experience was fun for me,” Stone said. “We went over things so many times at Disney and we were able to get it right. I loved the thrill rides and getting to ride in the tea cups was really fun for me.”

Matisan Fulgham added getting to perform at Disney World was the culmination of a dream she’s had since she was a little girl.

“It’s definitely been a dream of mine since I was a little girl seeing all the cheerleaders in the parade,” she said. “Actually getting to experience that for myself was amazing. You can’t put something off like this until the last minute that’s for sure.”

“My family always told me how much fun Disney was since I’d never been there,” Fulgham added. “It was definitely a once in a lifetime experience for me.”