Who are the Druid City Dames?
The Druid City Dames are Tuscaloosa, Alabama’s premier Roller Derby Team. DCD was founded in June of 2015 by Megan ‘VAL’ Gunter and Kelly ‘Salty’ Wolfe. Both women were former skaters with Birmingham, Alabama’s Tragic City Rollers. DCD began with a simple Facebook page called Tuscaloosa Roller Derby. The page put out a call for local women who were interested in roller derby to meet up at Druid City Brewing to discuss the prospect of building a local team. After a month of planning, the team had their first practice on July 27, 2015. In that time the team has only gotten bigger and better. Since the beginning we have been embraced by the Tuscaloosa community and we are proud to be apart of its cultural tapestry, this is why we adopted the city’s logo as our team chant: “The one and only!” DCD is also a not for profit sports team. We seek to empower local women to become more confident, better athletes, and stronger teammates. We believe that roller derby can have a deep and profound impact on a person’s life, bringing out both inner and outer strengths on the track and in their day to day lives.
Want to know more about roller derby? Ready on for some basics! We hope to see you at our next game!
What is roller derby?
Roller derby is a contact sport played by two teams of five members roller skating in the same direction around a track. Game play consists of a series of short match ups (jams) in which both teams designate a jammer who scores points by lapping members of the opposing team. The teams attempt to hinder the opposing jammer while assisting their own jammer—in effect, playing both offense and defense simultaneously. Roller derby is played by approximately 1,250 amateur leagues worldwide, nearly half of them outside the United States.
Modern roller derby is an international sport dominated by all-female amateur teams, in addition to a growing number of male, unisex, and junior roller derby teams, and was (as a roller sport) under consideration for the 2020 Summer Olympics. Most modern leagues (their back-office volunteers included) share a strong “do it yourself” ethic which combines athleticism and elements from camp. As of 2014, the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA), had 243 full member leagues and 114 Apprentice Leagues.
What is ‘flat-track” roller derby?
From WFTDA (Women’s Flat Track Derby Association):
Flat track roller derby is a fast-paced contact team sport that requires speed, strategy, and athleticism. The flat track version of the sport evolved in 2001, and has quickly grown to encompass more than 400 leagues worldwide. This is in large part due to the ease of setting up a flat track–it can be done on any flat surface that is suitable for skating, such as skating rinks, basketball courts, parking lots, and even airplane hangars. This greatly reduces the capital needed to start up a roller derby league, and allows small groups of people to get a fledgling league off the ground. The DIY spirit that drives the sport allows roller derby leagues to create their own unique identities and adapt their structures to reflect their local communities.