Torn Fishnet Stockings and Roller Skates, It’s Derby Time!
By Kristin Hashimoto
This isn’t a sport for the easily queasy, pacifist-leaning, boys-are-better-at-contact-sports kind of a crowd. These girls push, pull, slide and fall down. Hard. They’ve all got battle scars, and play wounded regularly. They smile and laugh, loudly. It seems like they really live when they skate around a flat circuit oval track, strapped into roller skates, taped up, protective gear on, with you-know-what eating grins on their faces, as they pick their next target and swoop in for the “kill.”
On April 30th, The Roller Derby Girls of Maui, at 20 something members strong, will have their season opening game at the Boys and Girls Club of Central Maui. They will be pitted against the girls of the Pacific Roller Derby of Oahu. Maui’s Roller Derby Girls, are hoping for another season, undefeated.
For those unfamiliar with the sport, here’s a crash course: derby has been going on in Hawaii since 1956. The rules are straightforward, and the game is simple. It’s an endurance race while body checking opponents, catapulting teammates forward, and strategizing where, when and how, to score.
Jammers are skaters who are agile and quick, and possess great endurance. Blockers act as defense, and will push or interfere with the opposing jammer’s efforts to collect another point by lapping the opposing team. Jammers earn one point for every opposing skater they pass, after that initial lap.
Ten girls total are allowed on the track. It’s a game of five on five, with a total of two jammers and eight blockers. Two of the eight blockers may also be considered pivots and can relieve the jammer when necessary. If you see two stars on a helmet, you’ve spotted the team’s jammer. Everyone else will have a stripe,
indicating that they are a blocker. Whenever there’s a fall, and a blocker loses their “pack,” they are considered out of play, until they can skate up and rejoin their teammates.
Play is aggressive, and pushes aren’t just love-taps. Girls will go flying, bruises and blood may be shining; yet the girls will continue to skate on.
The game starts at 4:00 p.m. and concession type goodies will be available for purchase. This drug and alcohol-free event will have fresh popped popcorn, non-alcoholic libation from Maui Coffee Roasters and Indian food from Star Anise.
If hair therapy is your thing, take a break from the rounds on the track, and get something sparkly and/or feathery in that head of hair, from Salon 253. The DJ will spin throughout the game, keeping that raucous energy level at fever pitch.
If this PG-rating kind of family-fun day isn’t your type of game, Diamonds Bar and Grill in Kihei will host the Derby Girls’ after party from 9:00 p.m.
For more information on the Maui Roller Derby Girls, visit www.mauirollergirls.com. The website also lists future game-times and dates, and features photos of the derby girls. It also has a call to arms, for any future derby girl wannabes, referees, and first aid people. To any medical professionals, an emergency medical technician is on their “want/need” list. Go online for more info.