Baylor Golden Girls twirl for the cure

Baylor Golden Girl Caroline Carothers dons a rhinestone-studded hairpiece to promote Twirling for the Cure. Baylor's organization has raised over $3,000 for breast cancer research. Photo credit: Courtesy Photo

By Emma King, Staff Writer

Baylor Golden Girl Caroline Carothers, a San Antonio Freshman, and her fellow twirlers have raised $3,150 for Twirling For The Cure by making and selling their own rhinestone hairpieces.

With the help of the Golden Girls Instructor Lynn Dell Harrell and online orders, the Golden Girls have sold 286 hairpieces, all over the nation.

“It’s just kind of exploded, definitely so much more than we expected, considering our original goal was like 50,” Carothers said.

Twirling For The Cure is an organization that travels to national and worldwide twirling competitions and raises funds and awareness for breast cancer victims, according to its website.

The pink ribbons have even reached into other organizations.

This week, the 16 color guard members in Baylor’s Golden Wave Band and the 60 members of Baylor Spirit will also be wearing the hairpieces, but on their uniforms instead.

“They’ve had to work really hard to get it all done,” Harrell said.

Each hairpiece was sold for $20, and cost $9 to make. Carothers said her family donated the money for shipping online orders, so more of the profit could go to Twirling For The Cure.

“We did labor and everything for free, and so I was able to share the resources with the other twirlers and they helped make them,” Carothers said.

Carothers said the twirlers wore pink BUs in their hair last year for breast cancer awareness month. This year, they wear gold BUs, so Carothers and her mother came up with the idea to make a pink ribbon for the other side of the girls’ heads.

Carothers and her mother then contacted the founder of Twirling For The Cure, John Mitchell, to get involved with them.

Carothers said what they’re doing with the headpieces isn’t about the Golden Girls, it’s about the cause.

She said they plan on making more of these headpieces throughout the year.

“They’ve done really well with it, and we’re hoping we can continue it a few more months,” Harrell said. “Not everybody has one yet, and we’re hoping they will.”

Twirling For The Cure will also be selling the hairpieces at the national twirling competition this summer, which is open to twirlers of all ages.

“There’s always thousands of twirlers there every year,” Carothers said.

Thanks to those kinds of competitions, Carothers said when she came to Baylor as a freshman Golden Girl last year, she already knew two of the other girls pretty well. This year, two of the 2014 twirlers remain, and two others have joined.

“We love going to practice and having all that time together. We definitely grow close,” Carothers said. “We have an awesome team this year. I truly believe that we’re one of the main faces of the school and we always have to remember we’re representing.”

Carothers said colleges like University of Texas and Southern Methodist University only have one twirler, but that Baylor gives the girls a chance to work as a team.

“We’re the Golden Girls during pregame and then halftime we get to be our own feature and do what we like best,” Carothers said. “It’s really unique and something cool that Baylor can do.”

Carothers said three of the four Golden Girls will continue performing in competitions this year. She said it’s nice to have people to practice with or go to the gym with.

“We have such an appreciation for each other and the time and dedication that we’ve put into it,” Carothers said. “We are just here to have fun and perform in front of 45,000 people every single week. College twirling is by far the best part of anybody’s twirling career.”

Robby Hirst | Photo Editor