WBEZ | Windy City Rollers http://www.wbez.org/tags/windy-city-rollers Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en There's no crying in roller derby http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-01/theres-no-crying-roller-derby-105169 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Windy City Rollers.jpg" title="WCR's Yvette Yermaker booty-blocks a Kansas City jammer at the 2011 Derby National Championships. (Gapers Block/Steve Stearns)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">In contrast to <a href="http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/moviesnow/la-et-mn-ca-movie-culture-lance-armstrong-manti-teo-20130127,0,6057775.story">broken men</a> spinning sob stories&nbsp;to the likes of <a href="http://www.oprah.com/own_tv/onc/lance-armstrong-one.html">Oprah</a> and <a href="http://www.salon.com/2013/01/24/manti_teo_to_katie_couric_what_i_went_through_was_real/">Katie Couric</a>, tough-as-nails women have been dominating the news lately. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/01/23/four-memorable-moments-from-hillary-clintons-benghazi-testimony-video/">held her own</a>&nbsp;against&nbsp;a room&nbsp;full of men during her Benghazi testimony, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg took a fiery stance on<a href="http://www.jezebel.com/5979366/sheryl-sandberg-takes-a-blowtorch-to-gender-stereotypes-in-the-workplace">&nbsp;gender stereotypes</a>&nbsp;at the World Economic Forum, and&nbsp;female soldiers in the U.S. Military finally received permission to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/24/us/pentagon-says-it-is-lifting-ban-on-women-in-combat.html">fight on the front lines</a>. And on January 26, the <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com">Windy City Rollers</a> kicked off their home season at the UIC Pavilion with a bout for charity that spared no mercy on the track.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">All four of the Chicago home teams (The Fury, Double Crossers, Hell&#39;s Belles and Manic Attackers) played the Round Robin tournament in support of their respective <a href="http://gapersblock.com/slowdown/archives/2013/01/26/">charities</a>&nbsp;on Saturday night,&nbsp;but The Fury emerged victorious. Will they be able to take their early momentum to the home season&nbsp;<a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/about-the-league/event_calendar/">beginning February 9</a>?&nbsp;Or will they literally collapse under the pressure? From what I&#39;ve observed of these hard-hitting dynamos on wheels, the latter scenario is highly unlikely.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">As shown in the 2006 A&amp;E reality show&nbsp;<em>Rollergirls</em>&nbsp;and the 2009 feature film <em>Whip It</em>,&nbsp;roller derby has made an explosive comeback in recent years. Although the sport originated in Chicago in the 1930s, a transition to televised events (i.e.&nbsp;<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roller_derby#Evolution_to_contact_sport">scripted fights</a>)&nbsp;in the 1960s caused attendance to decline. The scene was basically dead from 1980 until the new millenium, when amatuer female flat track became an exciting new phenomenon.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Roller derby began its <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roller_derby#Roller_derby.27s_worldwide_amateur_female_revival">modern revival </a>in Austin, Texas during the the early 2000s, and renewed interest in the sport quickly spread to other major cities across the United States. In 2004, Elizabeth &quot;Juanna Rumbel&quot; Gomez and Kelly &quot;Sister Sledgehammer&quot; Simmons formed The Windy City Rollers: Chicago&#39;s premiere all-female flat track derby league. Now the organization consists of four competing home teams, two travel teams (<a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/travel-teams/second-wind/">Second Wind</a> and the #1 ranking&nbsp;<a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/travel-teams/wcr-all-stars/">WCR All Stars</a>) and a farm team&nbsp;of up-and-coming skaters called the <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/home-teams/haymarket-rioters/">Haymarket Rioters</a>.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">I&#39;ve never been a rough-and-tumble kind of girl, and I&#39;m fairly certain that one bump from a &quot;Smash-ley Simpson&quot; would snap me in two. Luckily for my delicate bird bones, just watching roller derby live makes me feel like I&#39;m part of the team. The rules can be a bit confusing at first (handy guide to pivots, jammers and blockers available<a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/about-roller-derby/how-to-watch/"> here</a>) but the combination of quirky nicknames, stadium theatrics and high-octane girl power always provides plenty of thrills from start to finish.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">I love the Bulls and the Blackhawks as much as the next Chicagoan, but somehow, nothing beats watching female athletes duke it out with the power of men twice their size. Win or lose, every bout is a guaranteed good time&mdash;especially when there&#39;s an <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/join-us-at-the-afterparty/">afterparty</a>&nbsp;involved!</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Interested in joining the league? Email <a href="http://tryout@windycityrollers.com">tryout@windycityrollers.com</a>&nbsp;for more information.&nbsp;Want to know more about roller derby in general? Visit the official <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com">website</a> of the WRC, &quot;like&quot; them on <a href="http://www.facebook.com/windycityrollers?fref=ts">Facebook</a>&nbsp;and Netflix this little gem when you get the chance:&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/RQGPdXnb2Gg" width="620"></iframe></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>Follow Leah on Twitter <a href="http://twitter.com/leahkpickett">@leahkpickett.</a></em></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div></p> Mon, 28 Jan 2013 08:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-01/theres-no-crying-roller-derby-105169 The Weekly Guide: Skating around town with the Windy City Rollers http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-07-29/weekly-guide-skating-around-town-windy-city-rollers-89834 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/segment/photo/2011-July/2011-07-29/Windy City Rollers.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The theater can be a place to while away the weekend but if Chicagoans want something a little less refined, they might consider the roller rink. Not the dancing-on-wheels variety but full-throttle aggression! Tamiko Saame and Alisa DePedro are two players from the <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/" target="_blank">Windy City Rollers</a>. To fans of the sport, it's "<a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/members/tamikaze/" target="_blank">Tamikazi</a>" and <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/members/sargentina/" target="_blank">"Sargentina</a>." The crew will roll at <a href="http://www.windycityrollers.com/category/events/" target="_blank">Saturday’s game</a> but first, they shared some other suggestions for how to have fun and maybe take one or two folks down too in the latest edition of the <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/weeklyguide" target="_blank"><em>Weekly Guide</em></a>.<br> <br> &nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 29 Jul 2011 20:20:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-07-29/weekly-guide-skating-around-town-windy-city-rollers-89834 Windy City Rollers play last pre-championship bout http://www.wbez.org/story/windy-city-rollers-play-last-pre-championship-bout-86826 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-May/2011-05-20/DSC04101.jpeg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago&nbsp; may be obsessed with Eastern Conference finals this weekend, but the Bulls aren't the only game in town.</p><p>The Windy City Rollers play their final pre-championship game tomorrow night at the UIC Pavillion.&nbsp;</p><p>The energy is high.&nbsp; So is the enthusiam.&nbsp; And for the rollerskating athletes, the action is intense.</p><p>ANNOUNCER: So Val Capone tryin' to slow down Sonya Mouthshut ....<br> <br> BRAWLTERS:&nbsp; Val Kapone and Ada Hatelace. Thery'e holdin' the line really well though, she doesn't have anywhere to go....<br> <br> Barbara Brawlters and I are sitting trackside at the UIC Pavillion as the Manic Attackers do battle with the Fury.<br> <br> BRAWLTERS:&nbsp; Ohh! And Beth sneaks around the outside. And she's out…<br> <br> Brawlters skates for the Windy City Rollers, but right now, she's giving me a private play-by-play.<br> <br> BRAWLTERS: The fun thing about Sarg is she doesn't wait for holes. She just hits people and makes holes.<br> <br> I expect to see big, bruising women on the track - and plenty are.<br> <br> BRAWLTERS:&nbsp; Nicely done!!<br> <br> But some are petite, some are lanky, some are buxom -- it's a complete smorgasbord of body types.<br> <br> BRAWLTERS:&nbsp; Ohhhhh !&nbsp; She just got through the line with about two inches of clearance.<br> <br> One thing in common, though… these women seem to love that this is a contact sport<br> <br> BRAWLTERS:&nbsp;&nbsp; Yeah, definitely, I mean even people like me with no athletic background, once you get involved in this and you feel what it's like to hit someone so hard that they go sideways. YOU GET HOOKED .<br> <br> Barbara Brawlters is 27 with orange-blonde hair, a winning smile and large black glasses. Not a born athlete, she seems almost surprised to find herself here.<br> <br> BRAWLTERS: Well, it's kind of funny, I've never really played sports before.. I never cared about sports before. I was a kid up in a tree with a BOOK.<br> <br> ANNOUNCER: Five points! Makin' the score now 70 to 40 !<br> <br> So here's how derby works. Each team has four blockers and a JAMMER.&nbsp; The Jammer's like the queen bee --the only one who can make points. Basically she's gotta elbow her way through the other team's blockers and lap 'em. After that, every girl she passes from the other team earns her a point, so speed counts.<br> <br> BRAWLTER: So it's all about positioning and as a blocker, you play offense and defense at the same time. You're working on getting your jammer through, keeping the other jammer from getting through and at the same time trying to keep the other team's blockers out of your jammer's way - which is a challenge .. &nbsp;<br> <br> ANNOUNCER:&nbsp; And that's gonna end the game. The Fury remain undefeated.&nbsp; ( WHISTLING, APPLAUSE )<br> <br> The Manic Attackers didn't win tonight, but they're not exactly downbeat<br> <br> VAL CAPONE:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; You killed it, dude.<br> <br> ZOE TROCIOUS:&nbsp; The championship is still gonna be like a fight.<br> <br> VAL CAPONE:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; Tooth and nail.<br> <br> Tonight, Val Capone, Zoe Trocious and Alisin Chains are Manic Attackers.<br> <br> VAL CAPONE: Exactly, I want another ring<br> <br> But they don't get paid for this, and on Monday they'll all be back at their day jobs.<br> <br> ZOE TROCIOUS: Umm, I do tech support.<br> <br> ALISIN CHAINS:&nbsp; Uh, I work in an operating room as a surgical technologist.<br> <br> VAL CAPONE:&nbsp;&nbsp; Uh, I sell beer at Wrigley Field.<br> <br> ALISIN CHAIN:&nbsp;&nbsp; There's housewives. There's people that work various --<br> <br> VAL CAPONE: Lawyers. Doctors.<br> <br> ALISIN CHAIN: Government jobs<br> <br> VAL CAPONE:&nbsp;&nbsp; Psychologists. A couple of social workers. Lots of teachers in roller derby. You have your summers off... have a lot of aggression built up. &nbsp;<br> <br> Roller derby used to have a bad rap.. And some people still think it's faked up with winners decided ahead of time.. But don't say that to these athletes. Contemporary derby is truly competitive and these girls have to train hard:<br> <br> BRAWLTERS:&nbsp;&nbsp; Ohhhhh, I cannot even begin to tell you. You use every muscle in your body. Especially your legs of course because you do skate in an actual squat position. So quads, hamstrings, calves everything - it's a huge leg workout. But also a huge part of roller derby is in your core. Your core strength is what allows you to stay low while you skate, as well as allows you to hit hard without falling down - and when you get hit, to stay up on your feet.&nbsp; &nbsp;<br> <br> BRAWLTERS: you've no-doubt figured out, is a stage name.<br> <br> A manufactured persona. When she's not here, she's working in accounts payable-- and her birth certificate says she's Erin Thompson. But part of why she does derby, is to have an alter ego.<br> <br> BRAWLTERS: Because you're FREE when you come here. You are shed of all of your everyday roles in society and what people expect of you. You can be anything you wanna be. And I've actually found that Barbara has encroached upon Erin in ways that I think are really great. I'm more confident. I'm more assertive and that's because of Barbara. Barbara is who I want to be.<br> <br> At the Windy City Rollers, for WBEZ, this is Linda Paul.<br> <br> CAPONE:&nbsp;&nbsp; Your name is Linda Fall?<br> PAUL: Paul<br> CAPONE: I thought you said "Fall."&nbsp; I thought - you already have a derby name…&nbsp;&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 20 May 2011 16:23:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/windy-city-rollers-play-last-pre-championship-bout-86826