It was popularized in movies like “Kansas City Bomber” with Raquel Welch and “Whip It” which featured Drew Barrymore. The sport of roller derby is alive and well in Northern Utah. There are both men’s and women’s leagues that play regularly. And they play for good causes like raising money for CAPSA.
One of the women’s teams is the Junction City Roller Dolls. Many of its’ members are from Cache Valley. Mandy Olsen (who is known as ‘Shiner’ on the team) and Jennifer Clark (‘Shorty’) were guests on KVNU’s For the People program on Tuesday. Clark explained how roller derby is played.
“It is a full-contact sport and it’s between two teams and you field five people on the track at once per team. You have a position known as the Jammer who wears the star on their helmet. They are the people who score the points. The blockers are the people who try to help their Jammer through but keep the other Jammer in the back of the pack”, said Clark.
Olsen explained what drew her to this sport, “I started roller derby because I play hockey and a friend of mine was like ‘We should branch out and go to a derby bout.’ So I did. I went to a Junction City bout about two years ago and there at the bout I was like ‘I want to play this sport and join the team on the spot’ and I love it…it’s fun.”
The final bout, or game, of the 2016 season is this Saturday at 7 p.m. The Roller Derby Halloween Expo and Silent Auction will be held at the Golden Spike Event Center Exhibition Hall (1000 North 1200 West) in Ogden.
Doors open at 6 p.m. and there will be a costume contest as well. Tickets are $10 in advance (BPT.com) or $12 at the door. Kids 12 & under are free with paying adult. Tickets also available at All About Socks in Ogden.