We’re sisters in skates battling to be our best. You’ve seen us in the arena, imagine what we’re capable of without boundaries. We are athletes and role models; we’re good sports and good citizens. We’re tough. In this sport and in this world, you’d better be. We’ll show you our speed, agility, endurance, teamwork, and heart. We’ll show you our bruises. And you’ll see… this isn’t a show; THIS IS ROLLER DERBY!
May 18th, catch a double dose of the Derby Divas with back to back bouts against the Peoria Push. Your Push-Up Brawlers need you in the seats to cheer them on. The first bout begins at 5:30. Then, stick around for a second at 7:30. You’ll also be treated to a bit of burlesque by the Cedar Valley’s own Sissy’s Sircus between bouts.
McElroy Auditorium on the Cattle Congress grounds is the place to be. Tickets are $8 in advance, $10 at the door. Kids 12 years and younger are free. Get your tickets at Spicoli’s, Plaid Peacock, Mohair Pear, the National Cattle Congress box office, BrownPaperTickets.com or from your favorite Cedar Valley Derby Diva. One dollar from each ticket sold goes to the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Black Hawk County.
Photography courtesy of Donna “Squint” Olmstead.
The May featured skater is Pound Cake. Her first official practice (with the Brawlers and roller derby) was on April 2, 2012. She picked up the game with a quickness and became a staple in blocker walls.
We are sad to announce that May 18th will be Cake’s last bout. She and her husband will be opening their very own bakery in Council Bluffs: Mad Ox Bakery. Among other things, her sense of humor and camaraderie will be missed.
You can win her 2012 game jersey at the bout.
What is your name, number, and position you play?
Pound Cake, #91. Blocker
How and when did you get involved with roller derby?
When I heard that there was a roller derby team in the area I knew right away I wanted to try out. Everyone told me I was crazy for wanting to join, but I knew it was meant to be when I happened to run into one of the Brawlers at a mutual friend’s baby shower. I learned tryouts were happening in two weeks. I joined the team and my life has been forever changed!
What is your sports/skating background?
I played soccer when I was just a little tike in pigtails through high school. My specialty was goal keeper. It definitely is a physical position to play and probably prepared me for the athleticism of derby. As for a skating background, there were always birthday parties and middle school lock-ins at the skating rink. Although back then we weren’t trying to smash the crap out of each other.
What is the story behind your derby name and number?
I have been a cake designer for many years and when trying to think about what my derby name would be I wanted to take an aspect out of my life of who I am during the day with a little flair. So Pound Cake just fit. As for my number it comes from Psalm 91. In short it says that whoever takes refuge in the Lord will rest in his shadow. His angels will trample your enemies and no harm will come upon you. This to me meant empowerment and victory.
What training or motivation helped you along in your derby career? How did you learn to play?
I haven’t been playing derby for very long so I feel like I am still learning how to be more effective in my game. I am motivated by my teammates to push myself to the next level and try things that I might not be the best at or might scare me. It is what makes me a better skater and teammate. I learned to play derby by getting tossed into the mix. I think that is how most people learn. We read the rules and practice what we read but I think for me it finally clicked when I was out on the track with my team learning a bit more every jam I played.
Who is/are your derby hero(es)?
I came into derby knowing nothing about the sport, so maybe I don’t have the traditional derby heroes like most skaters. I feel like my derby heroes are the ones who taught me the rules, how to feel comfortable on my skates, how to hit, and block. They know who they are! They are my heroes and I am so grateful that they invested their time in me to become a better teammate and skater.
What is your signature move?
I don’t know if you could call it signature but I am pretty proud of my plow stop. I use it all the time to slow a wall or a jammer. I feel like it is pretty effective. You could call it The Pound Cake Plow!
What do you think about when lacing up your skates?
I am usually thinking… I can’t believe I get to do this, it is so awesome. Then I am thinking don’t get killed!
How has your involvement in derby affected the way you live the rest of your life?
When I went to the informational meeting I was told that derby was hard, that it took a ton of time and there was a high risk of getting injured. But if I let it, it would change my life. I love this sport, it is so different and I feel like it is made for any age, shape, or belief. Not only have I found a sport that is physically challenging and exciting, I found a second family here! I love these women! I never would have guessed a year ago I would find my best friends here. That will stay with me forever!
Advice for those who would like to join or new skaters?
If you are thinking about joining derby, like even a little, you should jump at the chance. You won’t regret it. If you are a new skater, don’t be afraid of where you are in your ability. I remember when I first started I was so scared and could barely skate 5 minutes without feeling exhausted. If you stick with it and try hard every time, you will get better. That is just how things happen. No one on the team cares if you fall down or are having trouble with a skill. They just want to see that you care, that you try, and that you show up.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I am so proud to be a Brawler!