AYOP 2004

Notre Dame's Joyce Center

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National Majorette Contest


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The prestigious National Majorette Contest, known by twirlers everywhere as "The Big One", is held at Notre Dame University in July.   The preliminary competition and the top twenty semi-finals are held on Tuesday of AYOP week with the top six grand finalists twirling off right before the Big Show!


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History of the eventSpace.gif (51 bytes)

      Looking back, "The Big One" has great tradition. From 1951 through 1981, it was held in St. Paul, Minnesota as a feature part of the St. Paul Winter Carnival. In 1977, a Twin Conference preliminary program was implemented with the St. Paul contest becoming the National League preliminary and a newly founded contest known as the American League Championships was held at Notre Dame University as a pre-AYOP event. The National League and American League winners then competed against each other during the AYOP Big Show at Notre Dame in a "Contest of Contests" known as the Grand National Championships.

     In 1982, the National League preliminary was moved from St. Paul to Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada where it was conducted through 1988.  In 1989, the Twin Conference program was eliminated, reverting back to the original plan with one preliminary, one top twenty semi-finals, and one Grand Finals. Majorettes must qualify in a respective state or regional contest to be eligible to compete in "The Big One". The top eight solo contestants are eligible for Nationals. In states or regions where a qualifying championship contest for the Nationals is not held during official contest year, majorettes may directly enter Nationals.

     A contestant may enter both her state and regional qualifying contest during any contest year but may establish eligibility for the National Majorette Contest only once. A double winner does not relinquish any awards or titles but merely yields one eligibility. Eligibility is established by first win. (Caution: With a win at a higher level, contestant relinquishes lower level eligibility to runner-up.)