Catalina Club goes to ‘the cosmos’

Krystle Wagner • Mar 8, 2017 at 3:00 PM

GRAND HAVEN TWP. — More than 200 swimmers will take audiences out of this world during upcoming performances of Grand Haven High School’s Catalina Club.

The synchronized swimming “Cuties in the Cosmos”-themed shows will take place at 7 and 9 p.m. Friday, March 17; and at 1, 4 and 7 p.m. Saturday, March 18, at the school’s Aquatic Center, 17001 Ferris St.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students; children ages 5 years and younger are free. Tickets are sold 30 minutes before each show.

Club Co-President Libby Plowman and officers Eliza Lowe, Sophie Kleyla and Allie Wexall started working on a theme, narrowing down songs and choreographing numbers since last March. Kleyla said they’ve spent an average of about 12 hours each week working on the 2017 shows.

Audiences can expect a fun show filled with a mixture of older and newer songs, Kleyla said.

Practices for this year’s show began in December, which is two weeks earlier than previous years, since there are more students involved and the choreography is “more complex,” the club officers said.

In digging through the club’s closet that spans decades, Kleyla said it was “cool to look back” at the previous costumes, which included clothing such as jean shorts and flannel.

With the different theme and more club members than typical years, club officers have been making some of their own costumes. Plowman said being involved with the club has provided her with the opportunity to sew costumes while spending time with her mom.

Plowman said her involvement in the club and as its president is also part of a family tradition, because her aunts were also in the club during their time at Grand Haven High School.

Whether it’s sewing costumes or helping keep stress levels low, the club’s officers said their moms have played a large role.

“There’s no way we could do it without our moms and Mrs. (Betsy) Ainsworth (the Catalina Club coach),” Kleyla said.

Going to a show? You are encouraged to wear lightweight clothing or short-sleeve shirts, since the pool area is warm.

Co-President Sam Hankinson said everyone has worked hard on the show and it will be nice to see it all pay off with the performances.

After years of being involved with the Catalina Club, Kleyla said it’s an honor to represent the club as an officer, helping to put their own touch on the show and its traditions.

“It’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it,” she said.

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