Courtney Comonie, a senior assistant teacher with Lynnette’s Twirlerettes, knew from a young age she wanted to be in the spotlight. After accomplishing her goal to be Miss Spartan, the Peckville resident has been working to teach others everything she knows about twirling. Read on to see what she has to say about the sport and how her hard work has paid off.
Q: When did you begin twirling?
A: I began twirling when I was in 4th grade. I remember watching “Miss Spartan,” the feature performer at Mid Valley, twirl at a pep rally and I knew I wanted to be Miss Spartan one day! I started taking lessons at a local civic center and immediately fell in love with the sport. After a few years twirling at the local level I made the transition to competitive twirling. I trained in Lancaster and competed in state and national baton twirling competitions. I am so thankful that my parents drove me to Lancaster for 8 a.m. baton lessons a few times every month! I also took dance and gymnastics lessons to supplement my baton twirling training. I love twirling and sharing my love for the sport! My passion for performing kept me going to matter what obstacles I faced. I was always focused on my goal of earning the position of “Miss Spartan” which I achieved as a high school senior in 2016. Of all the titles I earned as a competitive twirler, “Miss Spartan” will always mean the most to me.
Q: When did you make the transition from student to instructor?
A: I made the transition from student to teacher pretty early on in my baton twirling career. After twirling for around two years, I began assisting local baton classes as a student demonstrator. After graduating I formally joined the Lynnette’s Twirlerettes teaching staff. I also became the Mid Valley Front Line Advisor, coaching the twirling team and color guard at the school. I love teaching anyone to twirl but I especially love my older classes. I love to work with the kids who have the drive and determination to succeed. I will quite literally jump for joy and do a happy dance with a twirler when they catch a trick they have been working on. It truly brings me so much joy to see our students succeed and share my love for baton twirling. During my time as a student, I was blessed to have the opportunity to work with many coaches from across the US. I developed my teaching style by reflecting on what my other coaches did well and how they made me feel as a student. I strive to make all of my twirlers feel accomplished and confident no matter what.
Q: How has twirling changed over the years?
A: Baton twirling is always evolving. There are many different aspects to being a twirler. We perform routines on stage, twirl in parades, compete and even twirl fire batons and knives! Something people may not know about twirling is that there are a lot of different styles of baton twirling. Almost like a dialect exists in language, each coach and team develops a style unique to them. It is exciting to learn new twirling styles and tricks when meeting new twirlers. Another misconception is that it is easy. Of course it is a twirler’s job to make twirling look easy, but it takes a lot of time and practice to perfect skills and routines to make them look effortless.
Q: What would you say to someone thinking about taking a twirl class?
A: Baton twirling has something to offer for everyone. It is a fun and dynamic sport that you can do on your own or with a team. You do not need any skills to learn to twirl. When you take a twirling class, you will learn many things beyond learning to twirl a baton. Twirling helps children develop hand-eye coordination, strength and coordination in both their left and right hands and reinforces good posture. At Lynnette’s Twirlerettes, we focus on being a good teammate and helping the community. We teach all of our twirlers a Baton Twirling Creed in which we recite: “I will always make baton twirling a credit to both myself and my community.” We do our best to uplift and empower our students to not only be good twirlers, but be good citizens and use their talent to serve their communities.
Q: When you’re not teaching twirling, what do you like to do?
A: When I am not teaching baton twirling I am probably shopping, decorating my home or playing with my yellow lab named Sophia. I also love to travel, try new things, dance around and enjoy all that life has to offer. I recently accepted a position as a high school science teacher at Carbondale Area! I am very excited to share my love for science with the Charger students. I also got married to my fiance Eric Fino in the 1,000 Islands (one of our favorite places to travel to) on Aug. 28.