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Brick House Betties seek new talent
Want to try roller derby? The Brick House Betties invite you to a Fresh Meat recruitment Sunday, April 27, from 9-10:30 a.m. at the CRI (2665 Dunsmuir, Cumberland).
Bring quad skates, safety gear (helmet, mouth guard, elbow/wrist/knee pads), and a positive attitude! Wear sports-comfortable clothing (don’t forget a water bottle) and bring a $4.20 drop-in fee for the CRI.
"Become part of a positive, diverse, sweaty group of derby-loving chicks!" a spokesperson said. "Learn to skate and join the fastest-growing, most fun sport on the Island. Need gear or can't make the date? Contact the Betties on Facebook or e-mail ahead of time: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Brick House Betties recently graduated some of their Fresh Meat. After a few months of learning how to roller skate and play derby, new skaters must pass a “benchmarking” test to scrimmage or bout. The basic skills test ensures everyone on the derby track is safe.
Bettie asked these new rookies questions that potential Fresh Meat may be curious about. Meet Anna SassN, Bean Bash’er, Gig Elle Boxxx, and Sting’er:
Bettie: How did you decide to go to Fresh Meat and try roller derby?
Anna SassN: The team pride and the courage and strength of the women spoke to me. Derby became a healthy new outlet for me.
Gig Elle Boxxx: I was new to town and went to watch a scrimmage. There were smiles all around the track and in the stands. I thought I'd like to be a part of that.
Sting’er: My friend asked me to go with her to Fresh Meat. I secretly thought once she felt comfortable, I'd hightail it out of there – until I met my amazing coaches and teammates. Derby has given me strength and confidence. It is an opportunity to be challenged in new ways.
Bettie: What challenged you at derby practice when you first started skating?
Bean Bash’er: Learning to stop! My rollerblading skills did not transfer over when it came to stopping.
Sting’er: Self-confidence and tapping into my "grrrrrr factor." Luckily, our coaches and the women on our team are supportive and encouraging.
Bettie: Your best derby moment so far?
Anna SassN : Passing my benchmarking test and participating in my first scrimmage.
Bean Bash’er: Mastering a new skill is satisfying. The first time I dished out a shoulder hit was great!
Gig Elle Boxxx: Despite being hit hard to the ground seven times as a jammer in my first scrimmage, I kept getting back up. It was an amazing feeling and a great personal accomplishment.
Sting’er: I’ve had moments that are funny, challenging, proud, painful, exhilarating, triumphant, and embarrassing. Us "freshies" built up a great deal of fear about jumping on skates. When our coaches had us jump the “Noodle of Doom,” we were shocked that we could all do it! I was stoked to tackle and succeed at this skill. It was like jumping a wall of self-doubt and self-limiting talk. We leapt over our comfort zones that night!
Bettie: Do you have advice for potential Fresh Meat skaters?
Anna SassN: If you don’t get it right away, don’t be hard on yourself. Learning to roller skate will come quicker than you think. And remember to have fun.
Bean Bash’er: Derby is empowering. If you show up at Fresh Meat feeling skeptical, this group of women will become your family overnight. If you don't believe you can master a skill, we know you can do it. You are "potentially awesome" at everything you try.
Gig Elle Boxxx: Don't feel self-conscious and don't be afraid to push yourself. I've never met a more supportive group of people who make you feel so amazing about yourself.
These rookie skaters are now part of the Brick House Betties team that derby fans can cheer for this season. The Betties will host two double-header home games at the Comox Valley Sports Centre. May 10 is a family event with Junior (under 18) teams, Stone Cold Stellas and Candy Crushers, playing the first game and then the Betties will take on Nanaimo’s Brass Knuckle Derby Dames.
Tickets available at the door only; doors open at 5 p.m.; first whistle at 6 p.m. June 7 is a 19+ (adult only) event with the Betties hosting Victoria’s Belles of the Brawl and two teams TBA. Info: brickhousebetties.com.
– Brick House Betties