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Released December 22, 2003


HATTIESBURG - The University of Southern Mississippi's world-famous Dixie Darlings will perform in the 18th New Year's Day 2004 parade in London, with more than one million spectators expected to see the parade as it weaves along a 2.2 mile route through the city.

Founded in 1954 by Dr. Raymond Mannoni, and now under the direction of Tracy Ott Smith, the renowned drill team performs with Southern Miss' The Pride of Mississippi Marching Band, and has been referred to as "The Rockettes of the Gridiron."

The Dixie Darlings' appearance in the parade is just one in a long history of high-profile performances, including at bowl games such as the Sugar Bowl and Liberty Bowl, along with countless television appearances.

Students recently selected to be members of the Dixie Darlings include the following: Angela Jernell Barnes of Moss Point; Dana Pearson of Mobile, Ala.; Emily Koppersmith of Mobile; Elizabeth Bridges of Bay Minette, Ala.; Erin Sheppard of Grand Bay, Ala.; Kathryn Gray of Mobile; Erica Bennett of Purvis; Sarah Patterson of Hattiesburg; Jessica Lyon of Collins; Stephanie Severns of Violet, La.; Magon Louise Tubbs of Pascagoula; Natasha Casey-Hayford of West Point, Miss.; Keeoka Moore of Clinton; Kristin Harris of Bay St. Louis; Priscilla Austin of Pass Christian; Melissa Puckett of Saucier; Janie Slaughter of Bay St. Louis; Brandi Alexis Sharpe of Kiln; Roxanne Fletcher of Waveland; Jenna Ann Daniel of Biloxi; Tiffany Bird of Biloxi; Jenna Tapper of Biloxi; Sarah McGrath of Biloxi; Malaika Aisha Anderson of Daphne, Ala.; and Lindsay Boler of Chatom, Ala.


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April 20, 2004 4:09 PM