P.E.I. roller derby brings out men, women and sharp elbows
'It's extremely welcoming, you can be whoever you want to be here,' says roller derby player
Roller derby teams from across the Maritimes gathered in Prince Edward Island this weekend for a Day of Derby Debauchery.
The sport has gained popularity on the Island over the past few years, growing from about 20 players a few years ago to two separate leagues with more than 50 players each.
Jaime "Lady G" Griffin, the president of the Red Rock'n Roller Derby Association says they'd like to see more Maritimers, particularly men, give the sport a try.
"To have one up west, Tignish and Alberton area, and have something east, in Montague or Souris would be, I think would be amazing," she said.
Player Megan "Peg Leg Meg" Gaudet says roller derby is about strength, and a sense of community.
"What keeps me here is it's extremely welcoming, you can be whoever you want ot be here and that's fine," she said.
Amidst many female leagues, there's only one male team in the Maritimes — in Saint John.
Steve "Haireola" Clarkson of Fredericton would like to see more men lace up some roller skates.
"We're at about five guys now that constantly skate, but we need closer to 10 to 14 for an actual team, so we need more," he said.
To help with recruitment, the Red Rock'n Roller Derby Association hosts training programs every year. One is being held Sunday in Summerside; Another session gets underway in Stanhope on Tuesday.
Organizers say interest in roller derby is growing across the island and throughout the Maritimes <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/PEI?src=hash">#PEI</a> <a href="https://t.co/reiYyoKF2k">https://t.co/reiYyoKF2k</a>—@JDoriaBrownCBC