The Windy City Rollers Home Team Season Bout #1 is tonight! The Fury takes on Hell's Belles in the first match. The Manic Attackers and the Double Crossers will battle in the second match. The action starts at 7.
I've been covering the Windy City Rollers for a few years. I went to my first night of roller derby action not really knowing what to expect. I was familiar with roller derby from television, but this was billed as a legit sport now.
After one night of action, I was hooked. This version of roller derby was just as fun and colorful as the old televised roller derby, but this was a real competition. While the ladies still had theatrical names (Sara Problem, AliSin Chains, Jackie Daniels and more), it lacked the over-the-top theatrics of the televised variety.
I admit that although they explained the rules and scoring before the bouts, I was still a bit confused about some of the specifics. Still, I got the basics and certainly enough to cheer on the ladies as they raced around the track.
I started interviewing some of the Rollers that night. Over the years, I've managed to get interviews with 20 of them, which can be found on the Johngy's Beat Windy City Rollers playlist on YouTube. Through the interviews, I learned a bit about the history of derby, the origins of WCR and some interesting things about the women athletes.
Much like the elite athletes on the Chicago Bandits and the Chicago Bliss, the women of the WCR are dedicated, skilled athletes, who train virtually all year. They sacrifice a lot for the sport they love.
The fans are interesting, too. You are likely to see a wide variety of people in the stands. Young and old, singles and couples, students and professionals all are rabid fans. It's quite interesting just crowd-watching.
I'm looking forward to seeing some of my old favorites and the rookies, too. Derby season is upon us and I am loving it.
Check WindyCityRollers.com for more info and schedules. Also, follow the Windy City Rollers on Facebook.
Project Mayhem, Peacock, Emtropy, Albus Rumblemore, Shake N Bake and me in Chicago, IL-Spring 2017.