March 8, 2012
Hosting the Clover Cup tournament for the third year in a row, the Dallas Derby Devils are dedicated to playing as much roller derby as possible (they played 23 sanctioned games in 2010!). They also show their dedication to their local community by going non-profit for the 2012 season and just had a successful fundraiser with a Purple Cow! Read on to learn more about the Dallas Derby Devils here…
The Dallas Derby Devils are based in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex in Texas.
How does your season run?
Our home season bouts run from April to September, and our travel team plays throughout the year.
How many skaters/teams do you have?
We have approximately 120 skaters who make up five home teams, and an all-star travel team. We also have a support staff of about 30 members.
How is your league structured (home teams, travel team, management)?
We have five home teams: the Death Row Rumblers, the High Seas Hotties, the Slaughterers, the Suicide Shifters, and the Wrecking Crew. We also have a travel team, the Army of Darkness.
How many days a week do you practice?
We practice Sunday to Wednesday on a weekly basis.
Who is the Dallas Derby Devils' biggest rival? And have you had any outstanding, memorable moments against them when you have bouted?
Houston Roller Derby is our favorite competitor. Over the years, all of our bouts have been extremely competitive, enhancing our great relationship with them off the track. Our most memorable bout with Houston was during the 2009 South Central Regional tournament in Atlanta, GA. We were fighting for the 3rd place spot to earn a position at Nationals/WFTDA Championships. The readers of DNN voted the bout as one of the Top Ten Best WFTDA Regionals Moments of 2009.
Do you have any sister leagues you’d like to give a shout out to?
We are fortunate to have excellent derby relationships with the leagues in the surrounding area, including Green Country Roller Girls, Texas Rollergirls and Houston Roller Derby.
What are the individual challenges of your city?
The Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex is home to a variety of high ranking sports teams, such as the Dallas Cowboys, the Dallas Mavericks, and the Texas Rangers. While we root for the success of our fellow local athletes, we are also faced with the daunting task of drawing our own loyal fan base. This is both a blessing and a curse, as it causes us to be more creative in the way we attract and entertain our audience.
What are your biggest training challenges?
One of our biggest training challenges is to create practice schedules to accommodate all of the skill levels for 120 skaters.
What kind of training/bouting facilities do you have?
We hold almost every practice at Mid-Cities Skateland in Irving, and we bout at NYTEX Sports Center, which is also home to the Texas Brahmas Hockey League.
We understand that you hold Fresh Meat tryouts to bring in new skaters, the latest of which happened on February 26th, 2012. How does your Fresh Meat process work? What should a potential skater know going into the process?
The Fresh Meat training program prepares skaters for derby play at a competitive level by providing the skills and conditioning necessary to play for Dallas Derby Devil home teams. All potential skaters are required to take part in the Fresh Meat program before they may be considered for a league team draft.
Skaters who progress through the Fresh Meat program, and pass WFTDA Minimum Skills 1-3.5.1, are eligible to progress into the alternate pool for bout assessments and scrimmage assessment release. At this time, they may attend all offered league practices, and can be drafted to become the newest DDD players. “Tryouts” for the Fresh Meat program are held at the end of each quarter, in conjunction with the current Fresh Meat assessments.
The Dallas Derby Devils went non-profit for the 2012 season. How was the league run previously? What led you to make this change?
The Dallas Derby Devils were an LLC until 2012. We recently established ourselves as a certified domestic non-profit organization. It is our hope that with this change we can continue to promote the Dallas Derby Devils, the sport of women’s flat track roller derby and be a better attribute to our community.
One of your league skaters, Cupcake Crusher, is not only an RN in the emergency room of a local county level one trauma center, but is a co-founder of The Nourish Collective. Can you talk a bit about Cupcake Crusher's contributions to the league?
A note from our Cupcake:
I am one of the co-founders, and current Vice President, of The Nourish Collective. The Nourish Collective nourishes hope by cultivating life-giving solutions to poverty, poor health, and despair. As passionate leaders in our global community, we are putting hope on the map!
In 2011 we developed a hand washing and soap-making curriculum and this curriculum was used in Morocco and Madagascar. We will continue work on our hand washing and soap-making program in 2012 and will provide health and business education in Haiti and Africa. We are working to expand domestic and international programs to include:
• Community assessments
• Community health education
• Business development and microloan programs
• Educational initiatives
• Building of water wells and bridges to provide access to clean, safe water
• Midwifery and doula programs to help reduce the mortality rate in childbirth
• Health clinics and community health programs
As far as derby, I have always been up for a personal challenge. After reading about the local league, I wanted to see if I could do it. I bought some skates, skated on my own for about 6 months and then went for it! After 3 days of try-outs, leaving me unable to walk without wincing, I got the call and was drafted by the High Seas Hotties! The rest was history. I fell completely in love with derby. I think the thing that I love the most about it is the new family I have gained. I suffered an ankle injury that put me out of my entire first season, and throughout it all, my Derby Sisters have been there to offer support, pep talks and advise. They continually encourage me to keep pushing forward with my dreams and goals for not only derby, but also with Nourish. As far as what the future holds, I can’t wait to get back on my skates and roll, Superhero Style.
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Who are the “behind the scenes” skaters who make your league run?
Rink Panther is our Head of Training. She is responsible for teaching skaters from basic to advanced levels of play, and trains our junior derby league. She has skated for the Army of Darkness since 2006, and made it to the Roller Derby World Cup tryouts in 2011.
Delta Blow is our Head of Production and handles every aspect of our bout production, including the upcoming Clover Cup Tournament. She has skated with the league since 2006, is a current member of the Wrecking Crew home season team, and has been a Committee Head since 2009.
Jax Revenge is in her second year as a Finance Committee Head, handling all financial aspects of the league, including sponsorships and fundraising. She began skating for the Dallas Derby Devils and the Wrecking Crew home season team in 2008.
As the Dallas Derby Devils’ Marketing Committee Head, Jackie Lation designs all of our marketing material and media outreach. She has been with the league since 2008, and skates for both the Death Row Rumblers home season team and the Army of Darkness.
June Carter Crash began skating for the original Army of Darkness and Suicide Shifters in 2005, before retiring from skating due to injury in 2009. She has been the General Manager for the Dallas Derby Devils since 2006.
Who are some of your star on-track skaters and why?
Anita Riot has been with the Dallas Derby Devils since 2005, and has been one of our biggest jamming threats for the entire time. Anita is the current captain of the Army of Darkness, having skated for the original interleague travel team, and has contributed to our training department since she started with the Dallas Derby Devils. She also made it to the Roller Derby World Cup tryouts in 2011.
Weapon X joined the Dallas Derby Devils in 2007, and has served as captain of the Army of Darkness, as well as WFTDA representative for the Dallas Derby Devils. Weapon X also assists Rink Panther on the Training Committee.
Both on and off the track, these skaters contribute greatly to the league.
For the Dallas Derby Devils, what are the benefits and challenges of being in the WFTDA's South Central region?
The Dallas Derby Devils are proud members of the WFTDA’s South Central region. The South Central region is fortunate to have leagues that promote a family environment but also plenty of healthy competition.
The biggest challenge of the South Central region is the travel costs involved in reaching all of the leagues in the region.
This year marks the third year of hosting your annual Clover Cup tournament (March 24th and 25th) and it looks like it will be the largest yet, with eight teams competing. What made your league decide to host a tournament the first year? What motivates you to continue to hold it annually?
Always eager for experience and competition, the Dallas Derby Devils skate every bout that is financially conceivable. Because of the high cost associated with travel, we reached out to our neighboring leagues and decided to host the first annual Clover Cup. It was such a success, that we have hosted it ever since.
It looks like competition will be pretty steep at this year’s Clover Cup with half of the participating teams ranked in the top ten in WFTDA's South Central Region. How are the matchups determined for this tournament? Do you have any predictions for the outcome?
The bouts for the Clover Cup 2012 tournament were determined by the Q4 2011 WFTDA South Central rankings. With several of the participating leagues from the top ten of the South Central region, we expect this to be a very exciting weekend with lots of competition.
What team do the Dallas Derby Devils most look forward to playing at this year's Clover Cup tournament?
We are excited to host all of the participating leagues at Clover Cup, though Houston Roller Derby has as always been a favorite among our competitors.
Your league’s all star travel team played an incredible number of WFTDA sanctioned bouts in the 2010 season: 23 bouts! What motivated you to plan such a full schedule? What was the experience like for the skaters on the travel team and for the league? Is this something you are likely repeat in the future?
Our goal was to gain as much experience as possible. Although we had a fantastic time and learned a great deal about the sport and our team, our schedule has included fewer bouts during the following seasons.
The Dallas Derby Devils just announced that they will be developing a Junior Roller Derby team for girls aged 11 to 17. What made your league decide to organize a junior league? How did you decide to reach out to this age group in particular?
The Dallas Derby Devils’ Junior League recently launched with great success. We decided to develop the Junior League in hopes of sharing our sport with the younger generation.
Who are some of your favorite sponsors?
We have been fortunate enough to carry sponsors with us from season to season who are in love with the sport and support us without fail. We must give a huge thanks to ZuRoma’s Italian Kitchen, Dr. Tony Brozek at The North Texas Rehabilitation Center, Rebel with All of the Gauze and the Scorpions Motorcycle Club!
On February 16th, you held an event called the Purple Cow Fundraiser. What is the Purple Cow? Is this an event that you organize annually? What other fundraisers have been successful for your league?
The Purple Cow Fundraiser is a big opportunity for DDD to raise funds to host the Clover Cup tournament.The Purple Cow is a local spot for gourmet burgers, hand-dipped shakes and diner specialties, along with popular local cuisine. This was our first time working with The Purple Cow and it was a huge success.
Gallery night is one of our most entertaining fundraisers. It is a great opportunity for our fans and skaters to dress up and bid on a silent auction, or view the amazing art available for purchase from our photographers. This event benefits both the league and its contributors, which makes it incredibly successful for all involved.
Is there any other information that you would like to share with wftda.com?
More information about the Dallas Derby Devils can be found on our website.
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