I have been covering the Windy City Rollers for a few years now. The Rollers are a flat track derby league based in Chicago. Last week, I had a new experience with the WCR.
The WCR Travel Teams were hosting the Twin City Derby Girls and the Ann Arbor Derby Dimes. The contests were being held at the Broadway Armory on Chicago's north side.
Broadway Armory Park is the Chicago Park District's largest indoor recreational facility. The CPD purchased it in 1998, after the National Guard no loner needed the space for military purposes. The 87-year-old facility houses five gyms and thirteen rooms.
The Broadway Armory is a bit of national and Chicago history. It also has great character and ambience. The layout has the fans very close to the track and provides for an up close look at the action.
Because the night featured the WCR Travel Teams consisting of the WCR Second Wind and the WCR All-Stars, many usual skaters were not in action. Those skaters were on hand though, to cheer on their derby mates and to mingle with the fans.
At regular WCR events, the action is provided by the four WCR teams, the Manic Attackers, the Fury, the Double Crossers and Hell's Belles. Therefore, the fans are usually divided fairly equally among those teams. On this special night, the crowd was almost unanimously cheering for the WCR skaters against the visitors.
The All-Stars and the Second Wind did not disappoint the fans either. The All-Stars crushed the Twin City Derby Girls 326-45. The Second Wind beat the Ann Arbor Derby Dimes 237-199.
After the night of hard fought action, the teams shook hands as usual. Much like when the WCR teams play each other, the roller derby community is tight knit and supportive of each other. They are fierce rivals on the track, but fierce friends off it.
The skaters are also very fan friendly. Fans of all ages filled the seats and cheered on their favorite skaters. The fans also got pictures and autographs from the skaters.
I cannot say enough good things about the Windy City Rollers. I can promise you that you will enjoy the night whether it is a Travel Team night or a regular WCR night. Either way, the night is filled with great competition from athletic women, along with a party-like atmosphere throughout the night.
The next night of WCR action is Saturday, May 20 at the Broadway Armory. You can get more info at WindyCityRollers.com or follow the WCR on Facebook and the WCR on twitter.
I would like to thank the Windy City Rollers for their time and consideration. I also want to thank our rep Joke Box Hero for facilitating the evening for us.
Joke Box Hero and me in Chicago, IL-April 2017.