It was my first experience going to a MN Rollergirls match and this was the first bout of the season this year. Their season lasts until April so there is still lots of time to see them. They skate at Roy Wilkins auditorium in St. Paul. These girls are tough, entertaining, beautiful and the ultimate in girl power. They are a league of unpaid, amateur skaters who not only practice and bout, but do all the work to keep the league running. All of the volunteers (refs, announcers, and production staff) are also unpaid and help for the love of the sport and the league. They donate a portion of the bout proceeds to local charities, and spend time volunteering at events and fundraisers.
As a roller derby novice I wasn’t sure exactly what was going on and where I should be standing to get the best photo. Of course I looked it up on Wikipedia ahead of time to understand the rules.
And according to Wikipedia “Roller derby is played by two teams of five members simultaneously skating counterclockwise on a circuit track. Each team designates a scoring player (the “jammer”); the other four members are “blockers.” One blocker can be designated as a “pivot”—a blocker allowed to become a jammer in the course of play.The jammer wears a helmet cover bearing two stars; the pivot wears a striped cover; the remaining members’ helmets are uncovered.
The bout is played in two periods of 30 minutes. Point scoring occurs during “jams”: plays that last up to two minutes. During a jam, points are scored when a jammer on a scoring pass (every pass a jammer makes through the pack after the initial pass) laps members of the opposing team. Each team’s blockers use body contact, changing positions, and other tactics to assist its jammer to score while hindering the opposing team. Certain types of blocks and other play are violations; referees call penalties and require violators to serve time in a penalty box”.
During the half time show they have a polka band that played some interesting choices. I don’t think I’ll ever forget NIN’s “head like a hole” played on the accordion!
I can’t wait for their next match!