McLoud cheerleader represents school in London
While her classmates were opening presents on Christmas Day, McLoud High School junior Sydney Arguello was traveling to London, England to cheer in the city's famous New Year's Day Parade.
According to the 17-year-old, she went to London alone and cheered in the parade with over 700 other cheerleaders from around the world, all chosen to perform and represent Varsity Spirit.
"It was pretty crazy...I heard so many different languages and met so many different people," Arguello said. "I had to make new friends right away and it was hectic, but I adjusted pretty fast."
Arguello said she was there for eight days and during that time she was able to explore London with her fellow cheerleaders and practice for the parade.
"We got to see all the major points like Big Ben, Parliament, Buckingham Palace and the Tower Bridge. It was pretty crazy," Arguello said.
The 17-year-old explained though her trip was fast paced and she went alone, she made friends and enjoyed meeting so many different people.
"It was kind of overwhelming at first...but they're just normal girls and we all had one thing in common and that's cheer. So we all connected pretty fast," Arguello said.
The junior said the parade lasted an hour and a half and it was quite cold, but overall she enjoyed the experience.
"It's almost like a blur...(There were) hundreds of thousands of people lining the street and they want photos and they're cheering," Arguello said. "It all went by really fast, but my heart was beating a million miles a minute."
For the 17-year-old, the best aspect of going to London was viewing its beautiful buildings and being on her own.
"(The best part) was getting to see all the landmarks and being without my parents and I got to meet and make new friends and we got to experience all of that together," Arguello said.
Arguello went to London as part of the All American program which seeks cheerleaders from around the country to perform in events such as this.
She said she auditioned at cheer camp and was the only cheerleader selected from McLoud and surrounding areas.
Arguello said she has been cheering for nearly a decade and she's loved every moment of it.
"It gives me a purpose. I'm loud and I like to hype people up, so getting to cheer on the school...is the best part," Arguello said.
The junior said she will stop cheering after high school, but she's grateful for all of the memories and opportunities cheer has brought her.
""This was a trip of a life and I'm extremely blessed to be able to go onto it and I highly recommend any other cheerleader to...100 percent go," Arguello said.
Arguello said she will pursue nursing and she's thinking about attending schools such as Oklahoma State University or Oklahoma City Community College.