RIVERBANK -- Riverbank High School's cheerleaders will get the chance to show off their best moves Nov. 4 when they cheer during the Oakland Raiders halftime show.
The squad is participating in the Raiders' ninth annual High School Spirit Explosion, in which a few hundred high school cheerleaders perform alongside the Raiderettes. This is the fourth year Riverbank High has sent cheerleaders.
Twenty-nine of Riverbank High's 31 cheerleaders are taking part. The event includes spending Saturday night in Oakland with chaperones. The girls dress up for a team-building dinner Saturday night at a nice but not too expensive restaurant. Think Applebee's or T.G.I. Friday's.
"It's a very big deal for the girls," said Vanessa Martinez, Riverbank's cheer coach.
A Raiders spokesman did not know whether other Stanislaus County high schools were participating.
The Riverbank Unified School District board of trustees approved the trip this week. Each girl pays $85 to participate. That covers $25 toward a hotel room and the $60 registration fee. The school district is providing the transportation.
The registration fee includes a ticket to the game, in which the Raiders will play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, rehearsal with the Raiderettes and choreographers, and a 2012 High School Spirit Explosion T-shirt.
"It's fun," said Riverbank High cheerleader Kimberlee Harrison, who went last year with cheerleaders Jessica Cruz and Niallyssa Tellez.
"You get to perform with the Raiderettes," Kimberlee said. "They are like Barbies. They're like perfect."
They're also friendly.
Kimberlee, Jessica and Niallyssa said the Raider cheerleaders make everyone feel comfortable.
The day also is a big deal for the cheerleaders' family. Martinez said last year, about 60 people from Riverbank made the trip, but only 17 were cheerleaders.
The rest were parents and others. They tailgated, saw the game and cheered on the Riverbank High girls.
"You get to watch the game and cheer your daughter," Niallyssa said.
Bee staff writer Kevin Valine can be reached at email@example.com or (209) 578-2316.