USA Football

Sparkle Squad Documentary Teaser Trailer



The Crystal Lake Raiders Sparkle Squad is a special needs cheerleading / pom squad for girls and boys with any form of intellectual, behavioral, medical, and / or physical disability who would love to cheer. The Crystal Lake Raiders Sparkle Squad enters its 13th season in 2017.

Last year the Sparkle Squad consisted of thirteen girls and achieved their 9th consecutive Illinois Recreational Cheer Association State Championship title!

The Sparkle Squad participants can expect to practice two evenings a week starting in July, and then one evening a week from early September through the end of the season (first week in December). We also cheer at one football game a weekend during the regular season. Practices are held outdoors during August and will typically move indoors in early September.

The Sparkle Squad offers friends, fun, music, dancing, cheering, and the opportunity to perform at Crystal Lake Raiders youth football games and two local cheerleading competitions where they strive to achieve a bid to the IRCA State Championships. The special needs squad is a wonderful opportunity for girls and boys of various ages and abilities to participate in an exciting sports program while experiencing growth in self-confidence, social skills, flexibility, motor skills and much more.

Registration for the 2017 Season is currently open and will close on August 1st. If you are interested in more information or have questions about the Sparkle Squad or the Crystal Lake Raiders organization, please feel free to contact Karon Runge via email at Also, feel free to pass on our information to other families that you feel would benefit from our program.

Karon Runge

Sparkle Operations


Take a look some of the Sparkle Squads from the previous years

CLR Sparkle Squads


In the Spotlight

NW Herald

Crystal Lake Sparkle Squad Provides Opportunity for Special Needs Youth | Read the Full Article

Vimeo 20-Minute Short

Sparkle Squad Documentary | Watch the Video

Sparkle Sponsor PR

"Chicago Estate Planning Lawyers Rally For Special Needs Cheer Team" | Read More

State Champion Trophies

Raiders Sponsors