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Amherst teen's singing dream takes her to Buffalo Bills' last home game

Camryn Clune of Amherst found out months ago she would be singing the national anthem before the Buffalo Bills' last home game of the season Saturday, so she's had plenty of time to practice.

But she didn't count on getting a cold before the game.

"She's been nursing a cold all week," said her mother, Patty Clune.

It's been about a week and a half, Camryn said, but she's been using "lots" of home remedies, she said, like steam, herbs and "a lot of natural stuff."

They must be working, because a cold could not be detected during a telephone interview Friday with the 16-year-old.

She's been performing the anthem before crowds since she was 12. And she has sung "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Buffalo Bisons and Buffalo Sabres games, but conditions are a bit different at New Era Field. There is a delay between the singer and the sound system at the Bills’ stadium that can be disorienting to performers.

To prepare for that, she has been singing the song over and over, then recording it, and then singing over the recording.

Auditioning to sing the national anthem before a Buffalo Bills game on a sunny day in the middle of the summer is a bit different than performing before the Bills play the Miami Dolphins in December. It could be worse though, the temperature is expected to be about 41 degrees at game time.

"Yeah, I’m nervous," Camryn said, adding it will hit her right before game time. "It's really such an honor just to sing."

The junior at Christian Central Academy started dancing as a young child, then went to a musical theater camp, and found her passion. She plans to go to college for musical theater, with a possible minor in communication, and wants to go into musical theater and to perform on Broadway. Along the way she has used her talent to give back to the community.

She performs in Backyard Broadway, a group of friends, that raises money for sick children. Last Christmas the group raised enough money to buy gifts for the family of a boy who was battling leukemia, and she said she and her friends will continue helping children with pediatric cancer through a new group called the Care Project.

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