by Sylvia’s Wrath
The end of the year is quickly approaching, and the holiday season is in full swing. As the days get shorter and the nights grow longer, people begin to look back over the last 12 months through a contemplative lens. This is a time for reflection and gratitude, an opportunity to take pride in accomplishments and learn from the struggles of the last year. Here at Rocky Mountain Rollergirls, we are no different. We look back at the experiences of and consider how to do better, to be better, as skaters and humans. This reflection allows us not only to set goals for the upcoming year, but to recognize and appreciate the work we, and others, have done to help Rocky be the inclusive, close-knit community that it is. This month, we would like to recognize those league members who have gone above and beyond to keep our league running smoothly. Without our volunteers, we could not exist, and we appreciate ALL the skaters and non-skating league members that keep us rolling.
The December Members of the Month have given so much of themselves to our league, and we cannot let another day go by without giving them kudos for all their hard work. We may not say so on a daily basis, but we appreciate and love you for all you do. We see you.
On the non-skating side of things, our coaches have really stepped up and given their all in 2019. The devotion of the coaching staff is unrivaled, and we cannot thank you enough for your commitment of time and energy to make us the best team we can be. Coaches are often under-appreciated, taking their position on the sidelines and quietly putting in the work that others don’t want to do. They are present at practices and games, blowing whistles, running drills, and always striving to better the team. They offer emotional support and feedback to players, and are forced to have difficult conversations when things aren’t going well.
Mr. Rooster (Mark Henry) worked hard for Fight Club, leading Fight Club to the Continental Cup and giving up more than 80 hours of his time to work with our team, while Emma Rolled Isle provided more than 50 hours of emotional support to players in her coaching role. We give many thanks to them and will miss them as they move on to big things in the “real world” (whatever that is!).
Rocky wants to give a HUGE standing ovation to our other two coaches for their continued dedication to the league: Coacheena and Siouxsicide Bomb (SB), both of whom volunteered well over 100 hours in 2019!
Coacheena gave 171 hours of her time this year, starting out as Head Coach for The Contenders, and then stepping in to fill the void when Fight Club Head Coach Mr. Rooster stepped down after Continental Cup. She has been in various coaching roles with the league for the past 3 years, running things for Project Mayhem, The Contenders, and Fight Club, as well as bench coaching for various home teams, most predominantly supporting her wife’s home team, the Dooms’ Daisies.
Coacheena is known for her quick humor, and her “morale booster,” a plastic bat that she is not afraid to use when players need a little “help” getting motivated. She lives for the win, and her favorite part about coaching is getting to travel with the team and being a part of all the bonding and fun that goes along with group travel. Coacheena acts as a coach, is a member of Eval committee, and has recently taken on another important role as a member of our Board of Directors. Coacheena, we don’t know what we do without you, and we hope we never have to find out!
SB has been with Rocky Mountain Rollergirls since 2013, taking on various roles over the years. She is an indispensable member of the league, giving her all to the various committees she works on. SB doesn’t shy away from difficult work, as evidenced by her continued role on League Relations, helping to keep our community positive and supportive in their interactions. She is also a crucial member of our Interleague committee, working to set up and organize games for the travel teams on both a local and national level. As if this wasn’t enough, she still gives time to the HR committee, making sure regulations are being followed and requirements are being met. We love you, SB, and are lucky to have such a lovely human give so much of your time and spirit to this league!
We look at these non-skating volunteers with reverence. They do so much for us, and they aren’t even strapping on skates and reaping the full benefits of their efforts! But it’s not only the coaches that dedicate themselves to making Rocky the best; our skaters are putting in the work too! It is fair to say that EVERY skater on Rocky has volunteered their time throughout the last year, helping bouts to run smoothly, cleaning and mopping the track to keep skaters safe, on- and off-skate officiating bouts, etc…It takes a village, and we make it happen. But there are overachievers in every group, and there are a few Rocky skaters that stand out and must be recognized for their hard work and willingness to pitch in at the drop of a hat. You can count on seeing these skaters at bouts and practices, and they will always be busy with some task that helps things go off without a hitch. Each of these skaters has donated more than 60 hours to volunteering, in addition to the time they spend on skates, practicing or playing.
Postal Servix (80 hours): Postal came to us at the start of the year and quickly proved herself to be a vital member of the league. She has been playing roller derby since it was invented (practically) and had a wealth of knowledge to share with the league. Postal started the year in a coaching position, but quickly realized she missed the joy of skating, and returned to her roots as a blocker. But we couldn’t let her talents go to waste, and she quickly became a major part of our training committee, with the bulk of her 80 volunteering hours spent running league practices. Players say they love her practices because she is knowledgeable about the sport and she brings great training ideas that make practices fun, while maintaining a challenging environment. She is also a great listener and quick to give individual feedback to skaters in the moment when it is most effective. Thank you, Postal, for all you do for our skaters in your capacity as a trainer!
Lumpy Skate Princess came to us in 2018 and we are all the better for having her! LSP is dedicated, both to her own progress as a skater, and to helping the league be more inclusive and diverse. She is an advocate for marginalized voices and is not afraid to speak against the status quo when needed. Not only that, but she put in 63 hours as a volunteer, on top of being at practices consistently. When she is not on the track as a player, you can likely still find her there, wearing stripes and blowing whistles. Reffing is a tough job, especially for newer skaters, and LSP does it like a seasoned vet. This is such an important volunteer job, as players cannot improve and be safe without the help of officials. We thank you for all your hard work, LSP!
Another skater that dons the stripes is our very own Betty Vedder. Betty joined Rocky in 2016 and rapidly made a name for herself as someone who gets things done. She has been a member of our HR committee for her entire Rocky career, acting as committee head for at least one of those years. She also served on our BoD and gives countless hours (well, not countless-she put in 62 hours this year, in addition to her committee work and skating time) to volunteer for any and all positions. She can be found donning stripes for games she is not skating in, helping with the bar, bench coaching, and being an all-around roller derby Renaissance woman. No job is too big or small for Betty, and she does it all with her trademark humor and positive attitude. Bonus: if you need a spreadsheet, she probably already made it, formulas and all. Thank you, Betty Vedder, for keeping us organized and informed on all things Rocky!
As stated, all of our skaters help out where they can. We’d like to also acknowledge the following skaters who also dedicated a huge part of their 2019 to working with our league. Each of these skaters donated AT LEAST 40 hours to volunteering this year. That’s at least a full week of work, given freely and with love by these amazing humans:
She Who Cannot Be Named
Sassy Bee Otch
Thanks to all of you for your willingness to give your time and effort to Rocky Mountain Rollergirls. We appreciate you more than you know.
All of the individuals highlighted here are an inspiration to others. They give of themselves, even when they have full-time lives, jobs, and relationships outside the world of roller derby. Their level of dedication and commitment to Rocky Mountain Rollergirls is indisputable, and we could not continue to function without their hard work. Rocky hopes you enjoy the holiday off-season and get the opportunity to experience some rest and relaxation. Because we’re gonna need you back when next season starts! Happy Holidays and can’t wait to do it all again with you all in 2020!