The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Aggie Wranglers share dancing success and future plans

Photo by Photo by Kathryn Perez

Aggie Wranglers Brayden Sievers and Jessi Gorman perform a “jitterbug” in Rudder Plaza. The Aggie Wranglers perform at a variety of locations throughout the school year. 

The Aggie Wranglers, a student western dancing organization, had unique experiences this semester, including fundraising for a new building, dancing at a Houston Texans football game and even a wedding proposal.
The team hosts dance lessons in Bryan-College Station and performs for free at approximately 100 times per year at various events and venues. In September, the team performed during halftime at a Houston Texans game with the Eli Young Band.
Kyle Chism, agriculture systems management senior and the president of Aggie Wranglers, said the Texans performance was one of the most exciting dances he’s done on the team.
“It was thrilling,” Chism said. “I’ve never been a part of something like that and it was super cool to be invited by a professional football team to perform for their huge stadium. It was also cool to get the experience behind the scenes and be treated as a professional performer.”
The Texans performance was not the first major event for the team this semester. During their performance on Sept. 3 at MSC Open House, Ricky Hiler, sports management senior and Wranglers treasurer proposed to his girlfriend Alyssa Jacobs, a kinesiology senior and Wranglers public relations officer.
Jacobs said the proposal left her shocked and excited. She said Hiler did an amazing job keeping the proposal a secret and getting all of her family there.
“He had the ring in a little pouch in his back pocket and all of sudden, at the end of the performance, he told me that he loved me and said we weren’t doing the ending position,” Jacobs said. “When I asked what we were doing, he popped down on one knee.”
Hiler said Wranglers has brought him closer to Jacobs because of the nature of the organization.
“Our partnership has actually improved our relationship because Wranglers requires more physical demand than a normal relationship, so whenever we’re both tired and exhausted, we still have to work toward a goal,” Hiler said. “It’s really shown us how to be strong and push through difficult times.”
Hiler said he and Jacobs have overcome the difficult task of leaving couple time at the door when they are at Wrangler events.
“The curse is finding a way to separate Wrangler time and couple time,” Hiler said. “That’s definitely the hardest part, but I feel like we’ve found a way to really have that happy medium.”
While he and Jacobs have a special relationship on the team, Hiler said the whole team enjoys bonding with each other.
“Honestly, they’re my family,” Hiler said. “It’s more than just meeting up once a week to dance and perform. It’s my family and what I look forward to doing every week.”
The team is currently fundraising on to build the Student Leadership Activity Complex with CARPOOL. According to Chism, the building will be an area for Wranglers to practice, host lessons and bond as a team.
“I can’t wait to see the end product of this building,” Chism said. “This is really big for us. We’ve been discussing it for a long time.”
Because Hiler is the team treasurer, he said he looks at the building from an economic perspective and thinks that it will be very beneficial for the team.
“It’s going to alleviate a lot of external costs that we have right now,” Hiler said. “When the building goes up, we’ll have a place to practice instead of renting a room. We can host our lessons there. Having our own place gives the organization an opportunity to take a step higher. It’s a big stepping stone to growing the team.”
Hiler said he is grateful to share these experiences with his teammates.
“Even though we’re primarily a dancing team, we really push to be close,” Hiler said. “We’re a bunch of friends that like to dance. We’re not a dance team that happens to be friends.”

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