Yep. The dreaded Sunday has arrived. Last day of RollerCon. No fun day indeed. Well, maybe a little fun.
After all, I got to work 3 bouts when I only expected to be part of 1. I was a Head NSO and Wrangler in one of them – both of which were firsts for me.
I got to watch some of Team USA vs. Philly which was amazing to see. The strategies and level of play put me in awe. And the officiating crews blew me away.
And, from everyone I’ve talked to, RollerCon 2012 was a resounding success.
Yes, the lines for the classes were long. But 2 years ago there were only 2 class options per morning and afternoon. This year there were 4 tracks running classes all day and into the evening. And if the classes were full, most teachers allowed people to observe and take notes.
Plus this year they added a scrimmage track that, with the exception of a couple hours each day, was running non-stop black & white scrimmages.
And 2 tracks had challenge bouts all day.
Add to that all the classroom classes which cover the business side of derby and so much more … you can definitely OD on derby at RC.
It really amazes me to think about how much time and planning was put into this 5 day event. I’m sure that planning for RC13 has already begun.
As I’m writing this, managers and volunteers are already discussing best practices and where improvements are needed. So next year will run smoother and better and be another great experience for all who attend.
I’m going to miss Las Vegas and all my derby friends from all over the country and world. But coming here has brought me renewed passion for this sport and I can’t wait to get home, first to hug my son and special friends and then to tell my derby family what I learned and encourage more people from my league to come next year.
Seems to me that every day I derby, I grow. And every day I grow, I’m better than I was. Derby challenges aren’t always easy and a clear answer doesn’t always seem apparent, but with my derby family, everything seems possible and probable.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my RollerCon experiences this year. And (derby gods willing) I hope I get to do this all again next year so I can continue to grow and improve and meet the goals I have set for myself.
Until I write again, be safe, take care of yourself and those around you.
Signing off from #VegasBaby
~Boo D. Bloxx
RollerCon isn’t just about playing and learning derby, it’s about having fun too.
Obviously there are plenty of non-derby things to do at RollerCon – you’re in Vegas after all. But even to do things that aren’t derby, you don’t have to leave the RollerCon hotel.
There was a luau this year hosted by Riedell, the annual derby wedding (where you can get hitched to your derby wife) followed by the ‘pants off dance off’ and the Black and Blue Ball, which happens tonight.
All of these events give you a chance to blow off some steam and have some fun with people from around the country and the world.
You get to dress outrageous or comfortable or how ever you want – after all, it’s derby and we accept people for who they are.
Being at RollerCon with days of learning, playing and watching means you need some downtime too. Time to recharge and have fun and hang out with your league mates and new friends. It’s all part of the experience that is RollerCon.
~Boo D. Bloxx
Saturday, July 28
Being at RollerCon is amazing and every person who comes here goes home with a different experience. And that is one of the best things about RollerCon. There are different level scrimmages, different level classes, seminars for learning all aspects of the game as well as the business side of this amazing sport.
But if you’re like me and live in a place where you can’t go to a local brick-n-mortar derby store, being at RollerCon is like Christmas morning every day.
Two years ago, there were may have been 15 vendors. Last year there were probably about 30 or so. This year? There are at least 60.
What do they have? Everything from t-shirts to jewelry to equipment to anything you could possibly want or need to play derby. And they are staffed by some of the most knowledgable people in their fields. You can get sized, talk to someone about the problems you’re having, get advice or suggestions on how to make things better.
As I walked through (yet again) today, I came upon Lori aka Lmbr Tmbr Onu from Emerald Coast Roller Derby. I had stopped to say hi to her yesterday and had to go back again today for another hug.
I’ve been following Lori and her sister, Kristen, on Facebook for more than a year (Lori Aid 2011). Lori was a victim of domestic violence and has been recovering physically and emotionally since she was attacked in April 2011. But with all she’s been and goes through, her FB page is filled with positivity – and all things “Peace, Love, & Purple.” She’s here selling bracelets, bumper stickers, helmet stickers, books and doing raffles – all in hopes of raising awareness on domestic violence.
Don’t think that just because a girl plays derby it doesn’t or won’t happen to her. I hate to think of how many stores I’ve read over the last couple of years on that subject and I’m sure there are many more we never read or hear about.
Lori’s bracelets are being sold in support of stopping the violence. In fact, one style she designed has an 800# printed on the inside so you can pass it to someone you know that might need the hotline to get safe from a bad situation.
The thing that stuck me most yesterday and again today was Lori’s smile. She’s so happy to be here and spreading her message and educating the derby community.
So if you’re here at RC12 – stop by and say hello to Lori and buy something from her. (Her table is right next to Wicked Skatewear). Show her derby supports her and are pulling for her. And if you aren’t at RC12, go to her FB page and order a bracelet and leave some encouraging words for her.
And above all – if you know or suspect someone is in trouble, please don’t stay silent. Help them get the help they need to change their situation. Because just like when you’re playing with your team, no one should get left behind.
Please … stay safe and take care of each other, here in Vegas and at home.