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Laker girl profile: Dara used to be a Cowboys cheerleader

April 16, 2011 |  8:42 am

C Laker Girl name: Dara

Hometown: Friendswood, Texas

Area of Residence: Thousand Oaks, CA

College/High School: I am currently enrolled at Santa Monica College with a major in Communications.

What prompted you to want to become a Laker Girl? I wanted to become a Laker Girl because it is a job that would give me the opportunity to get paid to do what I love to do which is dance! Also I would have the chance to be a part of the wonderful Lakers organization.

What do you think stood out to the judging panel, about you, regarding your audition? I honestly am not sure, but I am more than grateful that something I did was noticed.

What do you think makes a good Laker Girl? I think a good Laker Girl not only possesses great dance ability, but is a “people person”. She has to be an individual that is not afraid to interact with a crowd or speak in public. I feel that Laker Girls are well rounded young ladies, that carry themselves with class and represent the Lakers' organization well on and off of the court.

What is your dance experience? I started dancing when I was 8 years old in a competitive dance studio back home in Texas. I competed in dance competitions from the age of 8 until my senior year in high school. Once I graduated from High School I auditioned for the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders and made the team for two seasons straight. After my two years of fun filled memories and experiences in Dallas – I then decided it was time to move to Los Angeles and tryout for the world famous Laker Girls! I am happy to say, this is where I have been since the summer of 2009.

Favorite dance routine, while being a Laker Girl? As of right now there are two routines that I consider my favorites. One is to the song "Higher Ground" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers and the other routine is to "Heartbreaker" by Pat Benatar. I love the song and I think it will be a crowd pleaser!

Favorite uniform? My favorite uniform would be what we call our White “L.A.” uniform. This is the uniform that we usually wear at Sunday games to match the players white uniforms. I like it because I think it looks flattering on everyone and matching the players in their traditional white uniforms feels like we are all united as a team and a city.

Favorite Lakers Player? My favorite Lakers player is Derek Fisher. I love the character that he shows on the court and off the court. (in our community)

Favorite Laker Girl memory so far? The greatest memory I have so far would have to be game seven last season against the Boston Celtics. That night you could just feel the unity of all the Lakers fans in Staples Center! Not to mention, the heart of the city beating! It gave me such an adrenaline rush the whole game. The entire experience was so surreal and truly felt like a dream come true.

What do you like most about being involved, as a Laker Girl, at local charity/community events? Taking part in charity events and getting involved in our community is one aspect of this job I truly enjoy. I think that this is the time where we get to spread our love and joy for life to others. We also get to show that we are more than just a “dancer” or “pretty face”. I love that I get the opportunity to touch someone’s life in some way, whether it be with an autographed photo or just a simple smile. It allows me to leave each event knowing that somehow I made a difference and I couldn't ask for more than that!

What would you say is your beauty secret? I wouldn't really call this a beauty secret, but I do try to get a good night’s sleep so that I do not wake up with huge bags under my eyes the next morning. (because that is never fun) Other than that, I just have fun and attempt to live each day without stress. I think life without stress keeps you young.

What diet/workout tips do you have? In order to stay fit and be healthy, I encourage others to try to eat right. Also, try to do some kind of work out or activity a day. I try to make sure I have at least one good meal a day that consist of fish or chicken with two different types of vegetables. I also try to substitute my unhealthy snacks with things like fruit. As for my workout, I personally enjoy running because it gets my heart rate going…..and it can be a great stress reliever.

What are your hobbies? Aside from dancing, I love to read, write, go shopping. In addition, I enjoy a nice day at the beach.

Career aspirations? As of right now I am not exactly sure what career I would like to hold, but considering that my major is in Communications, a job involving Public Relations is my interest. I am young right now, so I am simply taking each day as it comes!

--Mark Medina

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