Monthly Archives: May 2016

PLAYER PROFILE: DAWN CHERRY

Name and number
My name is Dawn Cherry and my number is 1313.
sMel

Photo courtesy of her jerk friend who dug through FB to find this delightful gem.

Does your name an/or number have a meaning?
Seven years ago when I started playing derby, there were a lot more costumes. The name Dawn Cherry came from the idea that it would be super fun to wear loud prints and channel my namesake’s personality on the track.
13 was also always my lucky number but was taken by someone else in my league so I went with 1313 which was my address when I moved back to Ottawa.
Who do you play for?
I’m captain of the Dolly Rogers and a member of the Beauty School Dropouts. I also coach Ottawa’s men’s team the Slaughter Squad.
Position
Blocker, blocker and blocker.  Sometimes I also block.
What I’m known for
No matter how I start, I generally end up skating backwards and bracing.
I can keep a level head, trash talk and shenanigans don’t get to me, which helps in my role as captain. I like to make my teammates laugh and occasionally instigate roller dance offs.  I may or may not use my authority as a coach to do this in practice.
Also I own the roller skate shop in Ottawa, so maybe I’m known for that too.
Why did you join roller derby?
Comically, I was looking for a sport that was less dangerous than softball, after a few too many balls to the face. I liked the idea of the showmanship and the ability to do a sport that was outside the box.  The fact that everyone was starting from scratch also helped ease my ego.
Why do I keep playing? 
Why I joined and why I stay have very different reasons. I started because of the novelty. I stay because this sport reminds me every day of how strong and smart I am and how much I truly didn’t get this before derby.
Don’t get me wrong, I grew up in a very supportive environment where I was told I could do or be anything that I wanted. But being ladylike, delicate, and accommodating were rewarded behaviours. Derby has taught me that competition, strength, and perseverance are not in conflict with what I value; they are equally important, display a different type of beauty and make me a hell of a lot more well-rounded. I’m proud that the people I surround myself with in this sport make me a better person, a better athlete, and a stronger leader.
Favourite moments
  • Any time we’ve been underestimated for our size, which is like…always.
  • Road trips with the dolly rogers, especially our trip to snake island.
  • The first time Slaughter Squad members started calling me “Coach.”
Final thoughts
Obviously I think that roller derby is pretty great. I left a comfortable job in high tech to pursue a career built around the sport and I haven’t looked back. So, either I’m crazy or there’s something pretty awesome in it.
To see Dawn in action, minus the loud prints and strange ties…she’ll be hitting the track on May 28, 2016. Click here for more information!
If you want to see Dawn Cherry in suspenders again, donate to the Dolly Rogers GoFundMe campaign. Please add a comment to your donation to the effect of “DAWN IN SUSPENDERS!” and we’ll make it happen, take pictures, and post them for your enjoyment.

PLAYER PROFILE: EDMONTON

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Photo courtesy of JAMMER LINE

Name and Number:

Hello! My name is Edmonton (or Ed, if you’re in a hurry) and my number is 780.

Does your name and/or number have a meaning?

When I transferred to CCDD from an Edmonton roller derby league, I was lucky enough to have my lovely teammates name me. They are obviously very creative.

I did get to choose my number, though. 780 is the area code for Edmonton. I am also very creative.

Who do you play for?

I play for the Dolly Rogers and am Assistant Captain of the Bacon Pirates.

Position:

Blocker and Pivot. I will jam if I must.

What I’m known for:

Being backwards on the track.

My eternal love of Kevin Bacon.

Why did you join roller derby?

I’d been involved in competitive sports when I was younger, but had taken time off during my undergrad. When I began to look for something to fill the large, sports-shaped hole in my life, I decided I wanted to play a team sport and definitely wanted the option to play competitively. I saw Whip It and thought that roller derby looked awesome (spoiler: it is), and joined a Fresh Meat program. 

Why keep playing?

Derby is the most complex sport I have ever played. Blockers play offense and defense at the same time, jamming is completely different than blocking, and strategies change on the fly. There are so many things happening on the track simultaneously that it takes an immense amount of concentration, and you have to be completely in the moment to do well. Derby is not only physically tough, but also mentally tough, and that’s what makes it so rewarding.

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Photo courtesy of BookTheBooth.ca

Favourite Moments:

– Winning the Fresh and the Furious tournament in my first season, in a super-close, come-from-behind victory.

– Winning our second House League Championship last year, in a super-close, come-from-behind victory.

– Playing with the Dolly Rogers against the Vixens this year, which showcased how far we have developed as players and as a team.

Final Thoughts?

If you are considering getting involved with derby, DO IT! Come watch a game, join Fresh Meat, talk to one of the players. Nobody grew up playing derby, so not knowing the rules of the sport or how to skate is completely normal. CCDD has become my extended family, and I am always so grateful that I took the plunge and decided to get involved.

Catch Edmonton in action Saturday, May 28, 2016!

If you can’t catch her in action but want to help her and her team achieve their goals of playing tough teams and representing roller derby in Canada, visit the Dolly Rogers’ GoFundMe page and help make their dreams a reality.

PLAYER PROFILE: DREAD KNOXX

My derby name is Dread Knoxx and I’m number #66. I play with CCDD’s Dolly Rogers and also with their Dollinquents.
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Photo courtesy of Joe Mac Photography

I started playing derby after watching an outdoor practice of what I thought were crazy and courageous women on quad skates doing pylon obstacles and contact hitting drills in the summer of 2009.
Fast forward: Fresh Meat session, a steep learning curve and I was on quads! Over the years, injuries and life’s ‘other’ priorities sometimes took precedence, but here I am.
I love this sport because you are challenged both physically and mentally every time you step out on the track. They say with age comes wisdom but there’s  a lot to be said for watching your athleticism grow with age. The strength of growing as a player within a team is awesome!
My favorite personal moments are when, in the fast pace of a game, I have seconds of total clarity. As a blocker, it happens when we totally shut down a jukey jammer. As a jammer, it happens when I come around to the pack with strength and calm.
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Photo courtesy of Joe Mac Photography

I play because I can!  If you are testing the derby waters do it!  Come see a game, volunteer at a derby event, talk to a derby player, sign up for a Fresh Meat session.
~Just do something!