Trump's travel restrictions are ruining the 2017 International Women's Flat Track Derby Association's season. Many players hold citizenship in one of the banned countries, and their teams simply won't play without them. Seems roller derby, if not the United States, is about inclusion.
Via Vice Sports:
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It all couldn't come at a worse time for the young but fast-growing sport of women's roller derby. Since its revival in Austin, Texas, in the early 2000s, modern roller derby has been predominantly American, with most of the major tournaments and teams based in the U.S. The Women's Flat Track Derby Association, the sport's key governing body, accepted its first international member in 2009, and in recent years member leagues have joined the organization from Europe, Australia and New Zealand, South America, and Asia. There are a number of teams with skaters who are nationals of the seven targeted countries (Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, and Sudan) and for them this season presents an unprecedented challenge, with the prospect of both training and playing schedules being abruptly rearranged.
"As new info is popping up everyday, it is hard to know for sure what the situation will be like in a few months or even in a few weeks," Dorna Behdadi told VICE Sports. Behdadi is a charter member of the Gothenburg Roller Derby team in Sweden. They are also an Iranian national whose parents fled a country in upheaval (Sweden has historically received a large number of asylum seekers and refugees, something that the U.S.
Victoria Jamieson's 2015 graphic novel Roller Girl
won the prestigious Newberry Honor Award and it's easy to see why: Jamieson's story of a young teen's interest in roller derby is the perfect vehicle to explore the difficult and even traumatic way that girls' friendships change as they become teenagers, while never losing sight of the core story, about personal excellence, teamwork, and hard-hitting, girl-positive roller derby.
The Reservoir Dolls are going to the JRDA Nationals! Help the team travel from Lane County, Oregon to Lincoln, Nebraska!
Via their GoFundMe:
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Our Junior Roller Derby Team, the Reservoir Dolls, has just been invited to participate in the JRDA Nationals for the first time! Coming from Lane County, Oregon, this is a tremendous honor for our Junior skaters and they are very excited to represent our county as they travel to Lincoln, Nebraska this summer.
For more information on the JRDA Nationals, please see the following link.
We are also excited to announce that 5 members of our Team have made it into the JUNIOR OLYMPICS for Roller Derby’s inaugural year! Psychotic Angel (Alexia Vinje), Deathwish (Maggie Coombs), Jubert (Rochelle Jubert), Bashful Babe (Felicity Farrell) and Mowder (Danielle Mowder). As the first year that roller derby will be a part of the Junior Olympics, it is especially exciting that so many of our local skaters were invited to participate. For more information on the Junior Olympic Games, please see the link.
These two competitions are being held this July 9-13th in Nebraska. We are needing our community’s help in getting there! The cost is significant and many of the children on our team may only be able to make it to the competition with community assistance. We are needing help with Air travel, hotels, food and van rental for our whole team and several chaperones.
Thank you for any donation you are able to make! Our team thanks you!!
This weekend, April 29th through May 1st, Eugene, Oregon plays host to a giant roller derby tournament, The Big O
For the fifth year running, the Emerald City Roller Derby will bring derby players from around the world to face off in a town best known for being where Animal House was filmed. Three tracks of derby will be running all weekend. In the main event, a global roster of teams will seek to defeat the Rose City Rollers Rollers' world champion team, the Wheels of Justice, while competition in Mens and Junior leagues will also be run.
All the bouts will be live streamed via wftda.tv and ESPN will be covering 2 bouts on Sunday!
Big O Tournament, April 29th-May 1st Read the rest
Tomorrow, Eugene's scrappy Emerald City All-Stars face off against Chicago's Outfit Roller Derby team at the WFTDA playoff's in Detroit. Read the rest
In a related followup to my interview
with the filmmakers of the men's roller derby documentary, This Is How I Roll
, another derby film is currently trying to raise money for production costs. The Vagine Regime: A Documentary Where Vaginas Collide
puts the focus on lesbian, bisexual, and transgender skaters (a subject Kat Vecchio touched on in our interview) and how they've experienced both acceptance and opposition in the very inclusive world of women's roller derby. As of this writing, they are seven days and just under $10,000 away from their $35,000 goal at Kickstarter
. They're so close to kicking ass on the big screen -- let's help them out! [Kickstarter
] Read the rest
Last weekend, I was lucky enough to attend a screening of This Is How I Roll, a documentary about the growing presence of men's roller derby teams. Not satisfied with acting as coaches and referees -- or standing on the sidelines rooting for their derby girlfriends -- a small group of guys started talking about forming their own team and, eventually, their own roller derby league. It sounds like it should have been no big deal. After all, roller derby is a sport, and why should guys have a problem getting into sports? As it turns out, men trying to break into a sport dominated -- and revived -- by women was not as easy as it sounds.
After the jump, hear from the filmmakers of This Is How I Roll, producer and director Kat Vecchio and Joe Mihalchick, producer and men's derby skater Maulin' Brando with the New York Shock Exchange. Read the rest