Category Archives: News

KC Derby Crush – Coed Clash Battle 1

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any more exciting in the world of Kansas City roller derby, the Cowtown Butchers bring you their newest coed team, KC Derby Crush!

Coed teams are all the rage nowadays for MRDA teams looking to join forces with their female counterparts, and we’re thrilled that the Butchers are on board as well. Best of all, their first game is this weekend against the Sewer City Goonies just to our north in Riverside!


Click for the Facebook event page.

So what Kansas City flat track superstars are involved in this new coed endeavor you’re guaranteed to love? We got in touch with Cobrashark, co-captain of the Crush, and he was nice enough to send us the full lineup for this weekend’s game against Sewer City. Here now is your KC Derby Crush:

Cobrashark (captain)
Peanut Butter Panic (captain)
D’stroyer
Hellbilly Deluxe
Holden U’Backs (transfer from the St. Louis Gatekeepers)
Jamalamadingdong
Jam-pa
Jess Decker
Mary Lou Wretched
Peter Babriel
Polish Hitman
Ram Ram
Tuff Noogies
Wreckin’ It Right

Doors open at River Roll Skate Center at 6:30, and the games begin at 7:00. Tickets are $10 for everyone ages 11 and up. Kids 10 and under are admitted free. For an additional $10 fee, you can bring a 17x17x17 cooler full of your favorite beer — no glass or hard liquor allowed. Be sure and bring your own chairs, too.

Join KC Derby Crush this Saturday night for their inaugural game against the Sewer City Goonies!

The Return of Pippi Strongblocking

In May 2013, the legendary Pippi Strongblocking of the Shotgun Sheilas was diagnosed with breast cancer after a chance trip to the hospital following concussive injuries at a charity bout.

In the months that followed, the outpouring of support for our girl Pippi melted the hardest of derby hearts. Monies were raised. Awareness was raised. And in the early stages of 2014, our spirits were raised as it was announced that Wendy, the whimsically-named tumor that had invaded all our lives and threatened one of our finest, had been crushed utterly.

Pippi Strongblocking is cancer-free, and this weekend, she makes her return to the flat track for Dead Girl Derby‘s 2014 championship game.


“Me, worry?”

As usual, we caught up with some of her teammates and friends to get their thoughts.


So sayeth Coach Wyatt:

This Saturday will be the first game that Pippi has skated in 15 months with the Shotgun Sheilas. When she was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2013, it was a blow to everyone in the league. But, as I knew she would, she battled and destroyed every bit of cancer. The second she was released to skate, she was skating. When she was released for contact, she was scrimmaging. Pippi has done a lot of training, on and off skates, to get back into shape.

We have an amazingly deep bench with amazing skaters and she has had to work her ass off to earn her spot back. In the absence of Pippi, the team was forced to find themselves without her and I am damn proud of every single girl on my roster. Aneeda Hurtcha stepped up into some big shoes, and in my opinion, filled every single inch of them. Now with Pippi back in the lineup, we will see what happens. There is no denying that she is the heart of the Sheilas; she is a leader on and off the track. She brings an intensity and calmness to the track that it hard to describe. I am extremely excited for the game on Saturday to see how my Shelias do against the very talented Royal Pains. It is sure to be one hell of a battle. PFIST!


So sayeth Aneeda Hurtcha:

I have had the immense pleasure of having Pippi be my teammate and friend for four seasons of roller derby. She has one of the most kind and peaceful souls I have ever known and I trust and respect her tremendously. Pippi has always been a calming presence for me while on the track and words can not express how happy I am to have my Pippi back.


So sayeth Hittie Kittie:

When I found out Pippi had cancer, I was devastated. The whole team was just shaken to their core. The league was utterly shocked. Her battle was no easy journey, but she came through it all victoriously. Taking the track with her on Saturday for the championship game is both an honor and a dream come true. The Sheilas have their heart back. We were never the same team without her. If cancer can’t stop us, nothing can! We are Sheila Strong!


Pippi Strongblocking and the Shotgun Sheilas will face the Royal Pains tomorrow night at Kemper Arena for the 2014 Dead Girl Derby championship. Click the banner above for the Facebook event page. Doors open at 5:00, games begin at 6:00.

The 2014 Dead Girl Derby Championships

Derby fans, this Saturday night marks more than one very special occasion in the world of Kansas City roller derby, and even the most casual fans of the sport won’t want to miss this one. Not only is it the 2014 Dead Girl Derby championship games — not only is it the very last house event under the name Dead Girl Derby before they transition over to the Fountain City moniker — but perhaps most importantly, it marks the return of the great Pippi Strongblocking to the flat track after her enormously successful fight against breast cancer.

We will have much more on the return of Pippi Strongblocking later this week. For now, let’s turn our attention to the games themselves.


Click for the Facebook event page.


Deadly Sirens vs. Lovely Lethals

The first contest of the evening is a grudge match between the Deadly Sirens and the Lovely Lethals, two teams with tremendous talent who have struggled to bring things together the last couple of seasons, and that’s really all you can say about it. It’s a phenomenon we affectionately refer to as the Reverse Bumblebee Effect.

For decades, you see, scientists were confounded by the fact that bumblebees were able to fly, given their measly wingspan and wing mass vs. body weight. Physics allegedly told us they shouldn’t be able to get off the ground at all. Although that mystery has since been solved, the Sirens and the Lethals have the exact opposite problem: for all appearances, they have everything in the world going for them, but for the most part, haven’t been able to maintain flight.

The Lovely Lethals, in particular, were only able to muster 19 points against the Royal Pains last month and 14 points against the terrifying Shotgun Sheilas back in February. The Deadly Sirens have come about as of late and nearly took down the Sheilas last month, eventually dropping that one 78-70.

Given the apparent resurgence we’re seeing from the Ladies in Teal, we’re predicting a Deadly Sirens win by about 12 points. Expect that, but don’t expect it to be easy; historically, the Lovely Lethals remain one of the most dangerous teams this young league has ever seen, recent troubles notwithstanding, and they have a tendency to bring it when it really counts. This season’s grudge match should be a fantastic one.


Royal Pains vs. Shotgun Sheilas

No one could have been surprised when the Royal Pains, defending Dead Girl Derby champions, began the season with a bang and a 27-point win over the Deadly Sirens. The Purple Passion has been practically unstoppable the last couple of seasons, and 2014 looks to be more of the same.

Likewise, the Shotgun Sheilas have been terrorizing the flat track in this town since before they were even called the Shotgun Sheilas. They went undefeated for about two calendar years and still haven’t lost a game to anyone other than the Royal Pains since mid-2011. They lost the 2013 championship game to the Pains in a bit of a shocker last season, and you can bet they’ll be looking to change things up as the season comes to a close this weekend.

Things to consider:

  • The Royal Pains beat the Shotgun Sheilas in their only match-up this season back on April 19th, final score 39-34.
  • Pippi Strongblocking is back for the Sheilas, and she’s always a major factor.  The Sheilas are at full strength and have no players out on injury.
  • Lone Rager and Lady Killshot, major defensive and offensive powers, respectively, won’t be playing with the Pains this weekend.
  • Last month, the Sheilas nearly lost to a Deadly Sirens team that’s only beaten the Lovely Lethals for the last couple of seasons.

Nobody said calling this one would be easy.

All things considered… we’re predicting a Royal Pains win by 4 points.  That’s it.  It’s hard to imagine the point spread being any greater than that, but it is, on the other hand, quite easy to see this one coming down to the very last jam. These two incredible teams are both poised to become the first ever two-time Dead Girl Derby champion — that’s right, it’s never happened before — and while we’re giving the edge to the Pains, this final game of 2014 could easily be decided by the smallest of factors, given the caliber of teams we’re dealing with. If you’re not excited for this year’s championship game, you just haven’t been paying attention.

Doors at Kemper Arena open at 5:00. First whistle is at 6:00. Tickets are $15 for adults, $7 for kids ages 6-12, and ragamuffins ages 5 and under are admitted free.

As always, you can follow our Twitter feed for scores and highlights as the games progress, as well as our Instagram page for a behind-the-scenes look at Dead Girl Derby on bout night. Whatever you do, don’t miss the 2014 championship games at Kemper this Saturday night. This one is definitely shaping up to be one of the best yet.

The 2014 Rushin’ Rollettes

If you’ve been following the KC Derby Digest Experience on various social media, you know by now that the Rushin’ Rollettes captured the Blacksnake Rollergirls 2014 championship this past weekend at the St. Joseph Civic Arena for the first time in their brief history.

We’d predicted a Danger Dolls win by about a dozen points or so, but the Rollettes surprised us — in a good way! — by taking home the trophy in one of the better games we’ve seen this season, final score 39-30.


The 2014 champion Rushin’ Rollettes

The Venomous Vixens tasted victory Saturday night as well, taking down the Jesse Janes in the pre-championship grudge match 51-38. KC Derby Digest was on hand, of course, to capture the madness, and we’ll let you know the moment the photo album has been published.

Congratulations to everyone in the Blacksnake Rollergirls organization for a phenomenal third season of flat track action in St. Joseph. We couldn’t be more thrilled to see this league take off the way it has. They have an all-star game against the Fountain City travel team coming up, as well as a charity game in St. Joe in mid-September, so we’ll keep you posted on your next opportunity to see these amazing Blacksnake ladies in action.

The KC Derby Digest Experience

From the very beginning, the goal of KC Derby Digest has been to bring Kansas City roller derby into the spotlight and give it the exposure it so richly deserves, exposure the mainstream media apparently cannot (or will not) offer this great sport and its participants.

In the earliest days, we simply had the web site and a Facebook presence, and at the time, that was really all we needed. However, as KC Derby Digest and Kansas City roller derby continue to grow and expand, it has become necessary to branch out and meet fans halfway wherever they may be — and in this age of digital information, that means social media.

So branch out, we have. We now have a social media presence in what we consider all the right places, so feel free to like us, follow us, pin us, and tweet along with us as we bring you The KC Derby Digest Experience.


On Smugmug

Inexplicably, one of the most common questions we get at events and bout nights is, “What do you do with all the photos you take?” Of course, to know the answer to that, you’d have to already follow us on social media, and we understand many people aren’t quite as plugged in as we are simply because they have lives and we don’t.

Smugmug is technically not “social media” in the strictest sense, but it is where we keep all the photos we’ve taken at the various events the Kansas City roller derby leagues have hosted since we launched this little endeavor back in late 2011. You may notice that the quality of our photos has improved dramatically since those early days, and that’s simply because we’re not professional photographers and have never claimed to be. We do, however, strive for constant improvement, and along those lines, we think you’ll be very pleasantly surprised.


Click for ALL the photos!

Feel free to share our photos on various social media, but if you do, please don’t crop, edit, or alter the photos in any way. Always remember to credit KC Derby Digest, not an individual photographer, in the caption.


On Facebook

Like it or not, Facebook is the granddaddy of them all in the world of social media. It wasn’t the first to come along, but it is by far the most important, and probably always will be.

As of press time, we have nearly 1,400 ‘likes’ on Facebook — which is more than some of the teams and leagues we promote — and we are growing every day. Good old Zuckerberg drives more traffic to this web site than any other entity, hands down, with the possible exception of word of mouth. If you haven’t already ‘liked’ us, get yer tail over there and get ‘er done.


Click for the Facebook page.

We post to Facebook all the time. It’s our most often-used social medium. We don’t use it for photo albums because of its low-quality presentation (and peoples’ rampant tendency to share photos without credit, a phenomenon that doesn’t happen on other social media, for some reason), but we use it heavily to advertise new articles on the web site, upcoming events, and other derby-related news going on in Kansas City.

Always feel free to ‘share’ any of our posts you may find on Facebook. That helps spread the word about us, and in turn, spreads the word about Kansas City roller derby.


On Twitter

We’ve resisted the siren song of Twitter from the day it was launched. Don’t tell anyone, but we’ve always believed it’s the single most prominent example of everything that’s wrong with human nature. However, there are marketing opportunities too valuable to ignore.


Click for our Twitter page.

There is some good news, however.

The first is that you don’t actually have to follow us on Twitter if you don’t have an account (or don’t want one). All our tweets are public, and they always will be for that very reason. To reach the maximum number of people possible, we don’t lock anything down. Just go to our Twitter page, and everything’s there.

The second bit of good news is that there are only two times we will tweet: when we publish a new article on KC Derby Digest, and when bouts are in progress. On bout nights, you’ll see us tweeting scores and highlights, mainly at period breaks.

Other than those two times, we simply don’t tweet. It’s not because we don’t like it (even though we don’t), it’s because we don’t want to blow up your Twitter feed if you don’t follow a particular league, or if you’re simply more of a casual fan than we are.


On Pinterest

We might be a little late to the party, but we finally got around to launching our Pinterest page a couple of weeks ago, and we’ve been pinning away ever since. It’s surprisingly fun. We didn’t announce it right away because we wanted to build up some content first.


Click for our Pinterest page.

We think you’ll especially enjoy the board called “Pre-KC Derby Digest,” a collection of photos from when we were just wee fans, well before we launched this web site.


On Instagram

What, you may ask, is the point of having a photo album on Smugmug and a collection of photos on Instagram simultaneously? In the beginning, we asked ourselves that same question.

Think of our Instagram page as a backstage pass, an opportunity to see the bouts from a vantage point you might not otherwise have.  Since most leagues grant us access to areas of the venue the general public can’t visit themselves, our Instagram photos will offer an interesting behind-the-scenes look at your favorite leagues.


Click for our Instagram page.

We will only post photos to our Instagram page during events — no other time. Our philosophy here mirrors that of our Twitter page: we want you to enjoy our content, not be bludgeoned by it. You can follow our tweets and Instagram photos during events even if you’re there too, kind of like live tweeting for photos… without the need for Twitter.

Our Instagram photos are exclusive content found nowhere else, and if you share them online, please remember to credit KC Derby Digest accordingly.


And as always, feel free to share any of our social media pages (and this web site) on any social media forum you like. The more you promote KC Derby Digest, the more you help promote the sport we love. And if you love Kansas City roller derby half as much as we do, take a moment and let everyone know about KC Derby Digest. It’s always been our mission to promote The Greatest Sport in the World, and like the leagues we follow, we rely on fans to get the word out. Roll on, Kansas City!

Fountain City Roller Derby

We at KC Derby Digest have gotten quite a few e-mails (and even a few phone calls, which is weird for a web site) from local followers of this great sport asking about the impending name change from Dead Girl Derby to Fountain City Roller Derby, a change which was announced on live television a couple of weeks ago when Coach Kentner, Mel Breakdown, Texas Outlaw, and Slim Karsmashian appeared on KCTV5 News to talk about the league and all the latest. We caught up with Coach Kentner late last week to get the full details, and here’s what he had to say, followed by our own take on this incredible announcement.


Not pictured: Coach Kentner.


KC Derby Digest:
What prompted the name change to Fountain City after five seasons?

Coach Kentner:
“With the introduction of our two coed teams this year, we felt the “Girl” in Dead Girl Derby did not really describe us as a league anymore. We also wanted a name that tied us to the city that we love and come from. Kansas City’s nickname is the “City of Fountains,” so we thought Fountain City Roller Derby was a perfect fit for us.”


KC Derby Digest:
And who designed that brilliant new logo?

Coach Kentner:
“Our very own skater, Zombina, was the one who designed the logo and did an amazing job.”


KC Derby Digest:
When is the name change official?

Coach Kentner:
“The plan right now is to transition at the end of season on September 8th, the day after the last Coed/Zombie League bout. However, at the new recruitment nights on August 10th and 18th, the potential new league members will only know the league as Fountain City Roller Derby from the time they start.”


KC Derby Digest:
Will Dead Girl Derby merchandise still be available? Also, is the full line of FCRD merch already available, or will that take time to roll out?

Coach Kentner:
Dead Girl Derby merchandise is still available for purchase, but in limited quantities. We plan on selling it until it runs out. If we have a demand for what would now be considered “vintage” DGD gear, we will certainly look into printing more DGD merchandise. We do have some Fountain City Roller Derby [shirts] for sale, but it will take some time to get everything [else] designed and ordered. No team names will change, so team merchandise is still available for purchase. We are trying to make the transition for all our fans as easy as possible so no one gets lost in what is going on.”


Our Take on the New Name

Errrbody’s been wanting to know what KC Derby Digest thinks of the name change. Traditionally, we tend to be… well, traditionalists, so to speak. We don’t love change, and typically, we figure things are the way they are for a reason.

Having said that, we think the new league name is brilliant.

And that’s not “as opposed” to the old name, either; we’ve spoken with several people in the last couple of weeks who say they’ve always disliked the name Dead Girl Derby, and although we are not among them, we are in full agreement that the name change will benefit the league in just about every way imaginable.

Coach Kentner was exactly right: it does better reflect the league’s roots in Kansas City, and that’s important. “Fountain City” is clever, it’s culturally referential, and if you know what’s what, it does tell you where we’re from without actually naming the city. To add to the appeal, it will be vague enough for non-Kansas Citians to wonder aloud about the name, which is a form of free marketing/advertising unto itself. But perhaps most importantly, it is the latest indication that this amazing league has absolutely, positively grown into adulthood after five fantastically successful seasons.

The name Dead Girl Derby has its roots in the zombie theme the league’s bouts used to feature. In those days, Gang Green and Black Plague were the only two teams in existence, in keeping with the theme. The original logo was on board with that too:


Click to enlarge

It was fun, whimsical, and perfectly appropriate for an up-and-coming flat track league in its infancy. But I have to say, the chuckles I often heard when telling newbies about something called “Dead Girl Derby” were getting really old. Legitimacy in the eyes of the public is something roller derby may always struggle with, and this name change will be the latest nail in the coffin of the perception that this great sport is just pro rasslin’ on wheels.

At this point, they’ve outgrown the name, the logo, and the zombie theme. House games are held at Hale Arena — not exactly small potatoes. The league itself is now comprised of eight teams, and as a result, their membership has surpassed that of all other Kansas City leagues, male or female, making them “Kansas City’s largest roller derby league,” according to their still-under construction web site. A new name was simply the next logical step in the evolution of this unparalleled league, and they’ve certainly made the most of the opportunity.

In keeping with their origins, the new Fountain City logo retains at least one element of the old Dead Girl Derby design, and the Zombie League bouts held at B&D Skate Center are the perfect throwback to days gone by. From there, however, it is clearly onward and upward for this unstoppable league, and we at KC Derby Digest couldn’t be more thrilled about their continued growth and success. As these ladies and gents bring their Dead Girl days to an end and enter a new era of flat track excellence, we look forward to seeing what these incredible athletes have in store for us in future seasons.

(Tons of) Bout Photos

One thing any derby fan worth his/her salt has realized in the three-ish years we’ve been doing this is that we have a lot of roller derby in this town. And that’s a good thing. Whatever your preference, whether it’s hard-hitting men’s flat track action, the WFTDA rule set, the MADE rule set, or amazing coed bouts, Kansas City roller derby has nearly everything a fan of the flat track could possibly want.

Alongside all that amazing sports action is a plethora of bout photos that we at KC Derby Digest take great pride in… and that sometimes backs us up a week or two. When you follow as much roller derby insanity as we do, that tends to happen. Game dates conflict, photos get backlogged, and we get frazzled. But it’s what we do, and we love it.

Having said that, let’s get caught up on some of the amazing bouts this fantastic city has to offer during derby season.


The 2014 Rink of Fire

Teal Teal Teal! Kill Kill Kill! The Knockouts are the 2014 Rink of Fire champions for the first time ever. They took down the formidable Black Eye Susans 134-99 in a championship bout we won’t soon forget.

Earlier that evening, the Victory Vixens secured third place against the surging Dreadnought Dorothys, who as we said earlier this week, are not to be underestimated in the coming season(s). They’ve had a rough go of it the last couple of years, but given their performance on the track at the Rink of Fire, they’re on their way back up in a big way.

Bout photos are published, people!


Click for the full photo album.


Dead Girl Derby’s Coed League

One thing that’s never been seen before in Kansas City is coed flat track roller derby. We’ve had mash-ups in the past and pick-up leagues on the banked track that sporadically featured coed action, but never before has a league featured established coed teams in which the ladies and gents directly competed on a regularly scheduled basis. Well, thanks to Dead Girl Derby, that’s all changed, and history has been made in the process.

The Public Enemies and the Untouchables debuted last month at B&D Skate Center, and we couldn’t have been more excited. The coed league not only features some of the most promising up-and-coming talent Kansas City has to offer, it also boasts some of the biggest names to ever take the track in this town, names like Bomb Pop, Jamalamadingdong, and Red Ripper, just to name a few. Ladies are coming out of retirement to play for this league, so if that doesn’t tell you how huge this is, I have some beachfront property in the desert southwest I’d like to see if you’re interested in.

Last month’s coed bout featured some of the best derby photos we’ve ever had the privilege of publishing, and you can check them out here.


Click for the full photo album.

The next coed bout will be on Sunday, May 18th at B&D Skate Center, and we’ll be sure and bring you reminders about that on Facebook and here on the web site.


Zombie League

Last season, the good people at Dead Girl Derby had one of the greatest new ideas we’ve seen since we started following this fine sport back in 2010: take the skaters who aren’t rostered for that month’s bout, for whatever reason, and roster them for a B-team-style bout against each other. They brought back the OG team names — Black Plague and Gang Green — but kept the lineups consistent and offered it up to the crowd as the third game of the evening. Fans received thrice the derby action for their money, and the ladies involved got some valuable experience on the track — and in front of an audience — that they might not have otherwise gotten.

And as this league continues to grow by leaps and friggin’ bounds, so will the amazing action fans are treated to both at Hale Arena and at B&D Skate Center. The Zombie League debuted last month alongside the Coed League, and the results were incredible. As always, we have the photos.


Click for the full photo album.

The Zombie League’s next game is again on the same night as the Coed League, May 18th. Keep an eye on our Facebook page, we’ll keep you updated.


28 Skates Later

The Blacksnake Rollergirls of St. Joseph are now in their third season and loving every minute of it. As their derby footprint continues to grow, so will their coverage here on KC Derby Digest regardless of the fact that St. Joe isn’t technically Kansas City. The league itself was founded by former Dead Girl and Royal Pain Notorious L.I.Z., who has been in the news herself recently due to some unfortunate circumstances they’re still recovering from. However, last month’s zombie-themed event, 28 Skates Later, was an incredible success at the St. Joseph Civic Arena, and as always, we were on hand to join in the festivities.

The four St. Joseph teams — the Jesse Janes, the Venomous Vixens, the Danger Dolls, and the Rushin’ Rollettes — are really starting to dazzle some people with their skill and tenacity on eight wheels, and we look forward to their bouts every month, never mind the 55-mile drive. These BRGs make it worth every mile, and if you’re so inclined, we would encourage you to check out their next game on June 7.

For now, we’ve got photos from 28 Skates Later, zombie makeup and all:


Click for the full photo album.

As always, keep an eye on KC Derby Digest‘s Facebook page for upcoming bouts, events, and fundraisers, and we will see you trackside, coming soon! Roll on, Kansas City!