After two meetings, it seems like the Columbia Valley will be starting up its own roller derby team.
Several women appeared for the information and sign-up meetings, eager to participate. An ice-breaker practice is now slotted for May 1.
The possible new team will be coached by Chris Corey, who had coached a team in Buffalo from 2007 to 2008 before moving to the Valley.
The currently unnamed team will be practicing at the Invermere Curling Centre during the spring and summer months.
The game is flat-track, with the team hoping to have two to three practices a week. These practices will be closed to the general public, and all women attending must be outfitted in regulation equipment and skates to participate.
The team will be practicing on their skates and learning the rules of the game during that time, as well as what position they may come to play, though each player will get the chance to try each position.
Bouts (games) may happen in the fall season, but it is still undetermined at this time.
At the information and sign-up meeting, held at Rocky River Grill, more than 20 women were present and eager to learn about the game and participate.
“You wouldn’t believe the nay-sayers we had,” said Justin Atterbury, co-owner of the Rocky River Grill, who will be donating the team’s jerseys.
Two derby players from Kimberley’s “Bavarian Barbarians” team, Rosie Wrecked’um and Dirty Whats’er’face, were present at the sign-up meeting as well to help answer questions about the sport, the equipment, how to sign up, and more.
The Bavarian Barbarians are a part of the East Kootenay Roller Derby League.
Cranbrook also has a team called the Mountain Town Maulers.
“It’s been great,” said Whats’er’face of the team, which first started practice this year. “We haven’t had an official practice place, but we will at the end of this month.”
The Bavarian Barbarians have been practicing skating around Wasa Lake’s trail, as well as sweeping out and practicing drills and skill training in outdoor lots.
Skaters are able to train indoors and outdoors as their skates are equipped with a special “hybrid” wheel that allows for both kinds of skating without damaging the skates or wheels.
“Everyone has a great attitude,” said Whats’er’face. “Some of them put on their skates for the first time and were scared out of their mind, but they’re comfy now.”
“Once you get into it, it gets into your blood,” said Corey of the sport. “You become a ‘derby fanatic’.”
“We want people to be aware that this is a serious sport,” said Whats’er’face. “We’re always looking for officials.”
A Facebook page, called the East Kootenay Roller Derby League, is active online for more information about the league.