La Feria News

Local Dancers to Shine at Macy’s Parade

Front: Gloria Costilla, Danaira Vasquez, Katelyn Torres
Back: Kimberly Granado, Stela Perez, Elisa Cavazos, Jozlynn Esquivel, Isabella Banks. Not Pictured: Ariel Dove. Photo sent in by Lori Lazaro.

Special to LFN

The 2023 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City will include a group of 10 students from La Feria Early College High School. These students will be performing as part of “The Spirit of America Dance Stars” group. “The 10 dancers include former and current members of the Gold Stars Drill Team from La Feria Early College High School.” Explains Lori Lazaro, one of the dance moms who reached out to La Feria News about this topic.

Lazaro says, “The dancers who will be performing in the historic parade include Gold Stars Captain Ella Lazaro (Senior), who previously performed with The Spirit of America Dance Stars in the 2021 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Co-Captain Katelyn Torres (Junior), 1st Lieutenant Gloria Costilla (Senior), 2nd Lieutenant Danaira Vasquez (Sophomore), 3rd Lieutenant Stela Perez (Senior), Isabella Banks (Junior), Jozlynn Esquivel (Junior), Kimberly Granado (Senior), Elisa Cavazos (Junior), and Ariel Dove (Freshman).”

Lazaro shares that her daughter, Ella Lazaro has been a member of the Gold Stars Drill Team for all 4 years of HS.

“She has been the Captain both her Junior and Senior year and was Co-Captain her Sophomore year.”

Ella is a former student of Palm Valley Gymnastics and Dance in Harlingen, TX where she took Dance and Gymnastics classes.

Lozara says “This is something that I wanted my daughters and the other Dancers to experience,” Lozara says she’s “ just a Mom who coordinated to get the other Team members and their parents on board with the fundraising and requirements of the Event and Registration process once the new team was selected last Spring.” She continues by saying, “This event requires hours of rehearsal once all of the Dancers arrive in NYC and teaches them how to perform before a National Audience.”

Lozara along with other parents planned and registered their students for the event back in the Spring and began with a group BBQ Fundraiser. Students, parents, and families came together passing out plates in both the months of May and June.

“The Fulcrum Consulting Services, an Engineering Firm based in La Feria was our main Sponsor for the BBQ Fundraiser and also donated a Prize for the 2nd Fundraiser.

We received additional donations from individuals and the following local businesses: Elizabeth Perez Photography (La Feria), Clean Eats by Scarlet (La Feria), Kornegay Sweets (La Feria), Yes, You Can Paint w Becca, Tech Star Printing and Design (Harlingen), and even the Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino (Eagle Pass). In addition, a fundraising day was held at Peter Piper Pizza in Harlingen to benefit some of the 10 dancers. Other dancers continued fundraising individually. On behalf of all the dancers and their families we wish to express our appreciation to everyone who contributed or purchased from our fundraisers for all of the support provided to help these dancers commit to this event and cover their expenses.”

From the some of the Dancers
Ella Lazaro
This opportunity means so much to me, especially as a senior having my final experiences as a high schooler. Dance has been the reason I met some of my best friends and is responsible for many of the memories I hold dear to my heart. Continuing to make memories and performing in New York City with my teammates and friends will only add to the long list of things that dance has done for me.
I am a senior and I’m 17. As a group, we did multiple fundraisers. Although it was hard work and we worked to earn the money we made, we had fun doing it together and knew that it would pay off in the end.
Elisa Cavazos
Having the opportunity to be a part of the Macys Parade is so incredibly exciting and special. I see this opportunity as a way to get accustomed to bigger crowds as a dancer.
I am a junior and sixteen years old. Me and my family fundraised throw raffles and barbecue plates. Putting in the work to assemble and give out plates and tickets was worth it in the end because now I am blessed with an amazing opportunity. It was also refreshing to see that our community was willing to help support us for this big trip.
Stela Perez
Dance has always been something I’ve loved doing from a young age. Having the opportunity to do something I love alongside some of my best friends in New York City is truly a blessing. I am currently seventeen years old and I am a senior at La Féria Early College High School. We each put in so much effort and time and it was a great experience working together to accomplish our goal. I am beyond thankful to my family and others who have supported me.
Kimberly Granado

  1. Having the opportunity to perform at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade in New York is such an immense opportunity for several reasons. One it shows the dedication I have for dance as well as an incredible experience to connect with other dancers from all over the nation in such a renowned event where performance and entertainment are so highly recognized.
  2. I am a senior at La Feria High School and I am 17 years old.
  3. Several different fundraisers were set up to raise the necessary funds that were allocated for my expenses. My mother specifically went above and beyond to make sure everything was paid for. Different sponsorships from restaurants, businesses and officials were such a great helping hand. We are grateful to each one of them and our community for their continuous support. New York, here we come!!
    Katelyn Torres
  4. Participating in the Macy’s Parade gives me the opportunity to experience the dance world outside our small town and meet a variety of dancers from all over the country.
  5. I am 16 and a Junior at La Feria Early College High School.
  6. We had some fundraisers and am grateful for all the support. I am especially thankful to my mom and dad for also financially supporting this opportunity given to me.
    Jozlynn Esquivel
  • Being able to go to New York and perform in the Macy’s Day Parade is exciting because it allows me to be on a bigger stage and lets me get a broader taste of the performance life.
  • I am currently 16 and a junior
  • We had fundraising through PPP and BBQ plate sales. It was incredible to see our community come together to support our team. I am very grateful for that.
    Isabella Banks
  1. Dance has always been a big part of my life and this opportunity is the only one I’ve had in my dreams. I’m extremely grateful to be performing among other amazing dancers and experiencing a new part of the dance world.
  2. I am 17 years old and in 11th grade
  3. Raising money was a lot of hard work. From various fundraisers, donations, and selling items to reach my fundraising goal. I am so excited knowing that we accomplished our fundraising for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!
    Gloria Costilla
  4. I’m so blessed to be a part of the Macy’s Day Parade this year and it’s truly one of the greatest opportunities I’ve taken. I see this as a way to step out of my comfort zone & improve my performance skills!
  5. I am a Senior and 18 years old.
  6. We raised money and fundraised through raffles and BBQ plates. Im truly grateful that our family, friends, & community were all very supportive by helping us reach our goals!
    Danaira Vasquez
    Being able to participate in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade this year is a great privilege that not everyone experiences. I also can’t wait for the memories I’m going to make with my friends in this trip!
    I’m currently a 16-year-old Sophomore at LFECHS.
    Did you have to raise money for this trip? What was that like?
    Yes, I did have to raise money for this trip. It made me realize how fortunate I am to be surrounded by people who are so supportive and willing to help.
    Ariel Dove
    I am Ariel and I am so excited to get the opportunity to perform at the Macy’s Parade in New York. I am a freshman in high school and I am 14 years old. We had a couple of fundraisers but I am most thankful to my Mom who put up most of the money and my Tio Jr. for always going above and beyond to sponsor every event as well as my grandparents. I love them all very much!!!
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