Auld Reekie take on Finland’s Finest

On Saturday 11th June, the Auld Reekie Roller Girls All Stars (ARRG) will do battle with Finland’s Kallio Roller Derby at Edinburgh’s Meadowbank Stadium, continuing their international roller derby onslaught.

Get your tickets here. Please note, online ticket sales will close at 11am on the 11th June. Tickets will be available for £8 (£6 concessions) on the door on game day!

Fresh from a successful Big O tournament in the US last month during which the Edinburgh team took on some of the best roller derby teams in the world, they will be fighting hard for a win on home track.

Cailtin O’Carroll, All Stars Co-Captain said:

“We were definitely really challenged in America. American teams tend to have a lot very solid, big players. Inspired by this we will be training to aggressively own our space on track, and be a little more agile in avoiding the bigger hits. We’ve a lot to work on but we are in a really strong position – we’ve room to build and improve with one eye on next season already.”

Auld Reekie, now ranked 47th in the world will be more determined than ever to retain their unbeaten home record this year as a confident win against the Finnish team will further propel Edinburgh up the international rankings, a lose however, could cost dearly.

O’Carroll continued:

“The rankings position is always a risk, especially with an unknown (to us) quantity like Kallio who have been quietly beating teams ranked above us….but we feel it’s vital to play the harder games this season, to push ourselves to the limits. With Kallio there is a risk of us dropping some of the rankings points we earned in the US as a result of the game but we are incredibly hungry for the win and are prepared to take the risk to ensure we qualify for Championship Play Offs later on this summer.” 

Whatever the outcome, when Auld Reekie face Kallio, an explosive game of world-class roller derby is guaranteed!

Spectators will get two games for the price of one on the 11th June. In addition to the international fixture against Kallio, the day will also see the debut of the newly created C team for the Edinburgh league – the Auld Reekie Roller Girls All Star Rookies who will take on Aberdeen’s Granite City Fight Hawks. As well as top derby action, the event includes plenty of activities to keep the entire family entertained including local craft stalls, top ARRG merchandise, half-time entertainment, a stocked bar, tasty cake stalls and a kids’ area with crafts and face painting.

Tickets: £5 online, £8 (£6 concessions) on the door, free entry for under 14’s – to purchase click here. Please note, online ticket sales will close at 11am on the 11th June. Tickets will be available on the door on game day!

Doors open at 14:20 at Meadowbank Stadium

14:30 -16:00

Auld Reekie Roller Girls All Star Rookies V Granite City Fight Hawks

16:00 – 18:00

Auld Reekie Roller Girls All Stars V Kallio Roller Derby

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A Taste(r) of Things to Come


If all that Big O action has been whetting your appetite for destruction (and why wouldn’t it?), you’ll be happy to know that you can learn the hits, blocks and jams of roller derby at one of our regular Taster Days. ‘What’s that all about, eh?’ we hear you ask. Well, ask no more.

Our most recent Taster Session took place on Sunday May 1. The day started out with an off-skates introduction to derby (the whats, the hows, the whos and the whys), led by our fabulous league member BA Humbug. Then, thanks to our intermediate and advanced pals who lent their kit, the newbies got a look at all the gear and protection that goes into derby: skates (obvs), knee pads, elbow pads, wrist guards, helmets and mouth guards (brought from home, because nobody wants to share those). While they were doing this, they were sharing a hall with our brand-new ad hoc team, the WarriARRGS, a challenge team made up of mixed level skaters to play closed, friendly games with local teams, and got an up-close look at a scrimmage situation, plus a sneak peek at what to expect from roller derby once they pass their mins.

Thankfully, nobody was frightened off, and the group got down to a warm-up, before strapping on their skates and having a go. Everyone goes through a wobbly beginning (eight wheels is very different from two feet), but soon the group were having a go at doing a few laps of the track. This was followed by trying stopping for the first time (always important), and T-Stops were the order of the day. Balance exercises and skull crushing followed (skating without lifting your legs from the ground, using your thigh muscles to guide your skates in and out, right foot mirroring left foot, in order to keep moving forward in a pack situation).

After all that hard work, the group decided it was time for some fun: Hot Dog Tag, one of ARRG’s fave on-track games. Two skaters are assigned to be ‘mustard’, and have to tag the other skaters on track. Once tagged, the skater (or ‘hotdog’) must lie down on the floor and can’t get up until two other skaters lie down, one on each side of her (creating a ‘bun’). The game is a bit of fun, but works wonders for creating awareness of who’s on track, being aware of your own position on track, and, of course, dodging and skating quickly away from opponents. The last exercise of the day was crossovers – an imperative skill when it comes to getting quickly around the track.

Taster Day leader, Aisa Typhoon, said:

‘Everybody tried really hard and improved a lot in the session: the start was pretty wobbly, but they were all showing lots of stability by the end! Really good work – we’re looking forward to seeing them all in the next Skate Skills 101.’

The hope is that our taster pals will have enjoyed their time so much they’ll sign up to do our Skate Skills 101 programme – a 14-week course that teaches everything newbie skaters need to know to complete their minimum skills tests and progress to competitive skating, or refereeing!

Our next Taster Session is on the 4th December and the next intake begins on 15th January 2017! Email newskaters@arrg.co.uk for a place on the course!

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ARRG are heading for The Big O!

ARRG All Stars Head for The Big O

ARRG’s All Stars will travel to America to take on some of the most talented roller derby teams on the planet later this month.

The All Stars are currently ranked 48th in the world, are the only UK team to have secured a coveted place in the three-day Big O tournament in Oregon.

All Stars co-captain Crazylegs said the team needed to travel across the Atlantic to play top tier games, which will be among the hardest ARRG has ever played.

She said:

“We’ll be playing really experienced, well-practiced teams of a level we’ve probably not come against for a wee while.

It will be a huge test to hold our focus when things maybe don’t go our way and to keep calm and together. We’ve trained incredibly hard, developed some new approaches to our game, aiming to play smarter and consolidating key tactics. We are ready for the challenge.

We’re facing teams like original WFTDA member league Windy City from Chicago, who have been playing at the highest tournament levels since before our team existed.

Whatever happens, we’re stoked to be there and we are bringing everything we’ve got.”

The Big O tournament runs from Friday, April 29 to Sunday, May 1.

Nearly forty teams will compete, including Team USA and six of the top ten women’s teams in the world.

Good luck pals!!

ARRG’s Big O Fixtures:

Friday 29th April 

ARRG v Windy City Rollers (Chicago) 

Saturday 30th April 

ARRG v Sacred (Sacramento) 

Sunday 30th April 

ARRG v Santa Cruz

Games can be streamed live online via: http://ecrg.com/bigo/

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ARRG v Dublin

Auld Reekie take on Dublin!

Auld Reekie Roller Girls will kick off the 2016 international season when our All Stars take on top-ranked Irish team, Dublin Roller Derby, on Saturday 2nd April!

Boosted by incredible support from a huge home crowd, Edinburgh took a solid win over Newcastle Roller Girls in their season opener earlier in the month.

Despite the win, we are under no illusions that we will face tough opposition from Ireland’s strongest roller derby team. We have only faced Dublin Roller Derby once in the league’s history, which saw our B team defeated. In an interesting turn of events, some of those B Team skaters who suffered defeat at the skates of the Irish are now a part of the A Team – and you can be sure, they will have a score or two to settle.

In a change to the usual daytime fixture, the game on Saturday 2nd will move to an evening slot.

As always , we will have plenty of activities to keep the entire family entertained. These will include local craft stalls, merchandise, a well stocked bar, tasty cake stalls and a kids’ area with crafts and face painting.

Doors open at 17:10 at Meadowbank Stadium in Edinburgh. Tickets here in advance for only £5, or on the door for £8. Anyone unwaged or over 60 gets in for only £6 on the door.

As always, under 14′s are free, as is anyone with a disability leisure access card (plus carers).

 

 

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ARRGlumni – Juicy Lucy

ARRG is 8 years old this year. That’s a long time to be playing roller derby, and we’ve had our fair share of skaters in those years! Every member of ARRG is special and important, and when people leave to go on to other things we miss them, but what we really love is watching ARRG members leave us, and continue their derby journey elsewhere. It’s really exciting and inspiring to watch our pals grow with other teams.

We wanted to celebrate their achievements – so we have an exciting new feature – ARRGlumni!

Every so often, we will publish an interview with one of our ex skaters, or ARRGlumni as we are calling them, and get their side of the story. And, who better to kick things off than the incredibly talented Juicy Lucy, ex ARRG, ex London Roller Girls, and now with Newcastle Roller Girls! She gets around.

So, we asked her a few questions…

Hey Juicy! Congratulations on becoming our very first published ARRGlumni skaters. Let’s start with a bit of background - tell us about your time with ARRG, what teams did you skate on?

I skated with the ‘Twisted Thistles’ - as the All Stars were formally known. I also skated on ye olde intraleague team ‘Celtic Chaos’.

I now skate with Newcastle Roller Girls which is a dream come true as I am a Geordie. I also spent four years with London Roller Girls, where I got to travel all over North America which was obviously pretty good!

Well, yes. It’s not bad at all! So, what’s your favourite memory from your time with ARRG….

There are so many! When we beat Glasgow for the first time that felt really special, I can still remember feeling so elated! Also – that time Andy Clockwise drove Montreal up from London in a white van and delivered them to the Jack Kane Centre in Niddrie for a school night derby bout extravaganza.

Why does ARRG hold a special place in your heart….

I joined ARRG at the very beginning (2008) when we met in Bannermans to discuss ‘what a roller derby was’. We had our first ever practice in a church hall with no pads, but a lot of full contact! From such humble beginnings I have watched and been a part of the league grow and it is an absolute testament to the DIY, Woman lead ethos at ARRG which I absolutely ADORE.

What ARRGness did you bring to your new league when you moved away?

When I captained the Ultra Violent Femmes (LRG home team) I always ensured we had a choreographed skate out, which I feel is heavily influenced by ARRG.

Ha! We do love our skate outs! What is your proudest achievement since moving away?

Playing for England and travelling North America with London Brawling.

I feel like the Jack Kane Centre will always be my spiritual home. I love everything about it and all the staff, especially Tam!

We love Tam too! So, finally, when are you coming home to ARRG??

Whenever you invite Newcastle up to skate

Well, that is something we can definitely do…. so we have!

If you want to see Juicy Lucy take on her old ARRG teammates, then head along to Meadowbank on Saturday 12th March – not only will ARRG’s All Stars be playing Newcastle, but our All Star Reserves will also be taking on Dundee on the same day! Tickets only £5 in advance here, or £8 on the door.

 

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Double Game Day!

What’s better than a live game of roller derby? TWO LIVE GAMES of roller derby for the price of one!!

Yes, that’s right – Auld Reekie Roller Girls are bringing you a DOUBLE HEADER with 2 back to back games of Roller Derby. You’ll see ARRG’s All Star Reserves taking on Dundee Roller Derby and our All Stars taking on Newcastle Roller Girls’ Canny Belters and Not only that but we have some great entertainment planned as well.

We’re bringing 4 great teams, speedy skating, big hits and fun times to the track and an atmosphere in the crowd that will leave you smiling and wanting more. We’ve got great announcing, signs, music, chanting, singing and cheering plus tasty baking, merch, stalls from crafty peeps and more – it’s fun day out for all the family!!

Never seen roller derby before or not been to a live game? Not to worry, there are people on hand to help you with the rules and an announcer who will keep you right. It won’t be long till you are cheering along for your favourite team and shouting POWER JAM with the best of them. There’s always a mexican wave or two thrown in for good measure to get you on your feet!

Been to loads of derby games? Well, get your hands ready to clap, your voice ready to chant and your signs ready to wave! You know what to do. :0)

Come along to Meadowbank on Saturday 12th March to see the sport everyone’s been talking about! The doors open at 12pm!

Tickets £5 (+ booking fee) online in advance until midnight on 11th March, and are free for under 14s. Click here for tickets!

There’s always tickets ON THE DOOR too for £8

Got questions? email communications@arrg.co.uk
Are you a community group who fancies coming along? Email us and we can see about a ticket deal.

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Featured Official – Beardylocks!

We’re finishing off 2015′s featured ARRG members with a special entry – the amazing brand new baby referee, Owen! Affectionately known as Beardylocks on account of his wonderfully hirsute look, he’s now a fully fledged member of our officials team, both on and off skates. 

So, even if skating doesn’t look appealing to you, but you love roller derby, there’s something for everyone! If you do think skating sounds like your cup of tea, why not try out our taster day? You don’t need your own kit or anything! The next event is on January 17th, and is only £5. Email newskaters@arrg.co.uk to book your slot, and you might even meet the famous Beardylocks!

Let’s hear a bit more about his story:

 

Joined ARRG in: March 2015

 

Role in ARRG: Baby Zebra

Favourite position to officiate: Penalty Tracker/Jam Ref

Your Derby story – why are you here?:In a land before time (Inverness) I worked with a very good friend of mine who ended up as a referee through in Aberdeen, he decided to make it his life work to get me into a pair of skates. Rewinding slightly before that, I’d been involved in Roller Derby on and off since I’d lived New Zealand and got a chance to see the positive impact it can have on peoples lives and as such I wanted to become more involved and try to give back to the sport. While it took a few years from Wookies initial badgering to actually start trying to skate ( and about another 3-4 years on top of that of starting fresh meat then moving cities, lets just say I wasn’t a natural ) it’s been a great journey, with lots of opportunities to NSO and make a fool of myself in new and unexpected ways.

Best official-related advice: Try every role. Every time I’ve tried a new role it’s given me something I can take back to my preferred positions and given me a better insight of how the crew fits together and the different pressures at play.

What you do for the league aside from officiating: Sadly not much! At the time of writing I’ve just made it through Fresh Meat and am beginning to look at what I can do to help.

Any funny/embarrassing officiating stories: Nope. None. I definitely did not wipe out on the Jack Kane dead body multiple times during home team scrims

Derby Hero: I’m going to cop out of this and say I can’t name just one.  Outside of just the simple fact that anyone who gives up their time to take part be it as skaters/officials or volunteers  is awesome; I’ve also had so many great personal experiences. The number of skaters who have supported me in learning the basic skills ( in particular plough stops ), officials who have helped me when ever I’ve tried a new position ( a special mention to Jane Eerie for putting up with me decapitating her cup cake )  and just generally great people who’ve frantically directed me towards the nearest vending machine for my twice hourly caffeine fix is huge.  I do have to mention Mags though, for helping me find my ref voice ( to everyone else’s misfortune).

What do you do outside of derby: I work as a Systems Engineer so when I’m not at derby I tend to either be commuting and staring at a laptop or sitting at a desk and staring at a laptop. I also occasionally do long distance runs barefoot for charity.

Fun fact about you: I own a worrying array of stuffed and inflatable dinosaurs

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ARRG 2015 Awards Ball

Last night saw the whole league embark upon 28 York Place for our second Annual Awards Ball.

Everyone arrived to a welcome glass of Prosecco, and made their way downstairs for some food before things got underway. The ever-excellent Stephen Tawking was our compere for the evening, and he did not disappoint. The awards got under way, with a whole load of skating awards to start the night off. We took a wee break to draw the golden ticket winner – Congratulations Rich on winning that box of tape (and thank you for distributing it out to us all!) and then we drew some incredible raffle prizes, including a hoodie from Interplanetary Print Syndicate, dinner for two at Pinto, tickets for Camera Obscura, a Wikko skates voucher, a set of amazing books, a Surf Lesson, a go at Alien Rock, A Walkers Shortbread hamper and tickets to Edinburghs Hogmanay!

After some more awards were announced, we had a wee fun game, where the winners won passes for Westwoods Health Club, then we commenced the auction – some of the prizes included hand made cushion from End of Terrace Trading, Zorbing with Rolling Haggis, a pair of Wikko Skates, a Tattoo voucher from Red Hot and Blue, hair styling voucher from Miss Dixiebelle, ticket for the Silver Tour at The Scotch Whisky Experience, , a shot at Go Ape… it was incredible! So many amazing things, and we definitely want to extend a massive thank you to all the companies who donated prizes.

 

Then, it was time for the dancing. With a cracking DJ set from the amazing Harlot Bronte, everyone was on the floor all night until closing – and

everyone was in such good spirits, the party continued over the road!After the auction, we went on to the final part of the awards night, and once this was all done – we awarded the Leithal Weapons their Home Season Trophy! Congratulations again on your amazing win.

 

Thanks to everyone for coming. It really was an amazing way to celebrate the year. Here’s to 2016.

The winners were:

REF OF THE YEAR - Mags Payne

NSO OF THE YEAR - Blind Ioan 

BENCH OR LINE UP MANAGER OF THE YEAR - Pukeahontas

INTERMEDIATE JAMMER OF THE YEAR - Aisa Typhoon

ADVANCED JAMMER OF THE YEAR - Sharlotte Patterson 

INTERMEDIATE BLOCKER OF THE YEAR - PowerHoose

 ADVANCED BLOCKER OF THE YEAR - LuPaul

INTERMEDIATE PIVOT OF THE YEAR - Cirque de Slay

ADVANCED PIVOT OF THE YEAR - Yin and Bang

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR - Danisaurus Wrecks

LEAGUE MVP OF THE YEAR - Crazylegs

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT - Bacon Roll

COACH AWARD - Pope John Brawl

GOOD SPIRIT -  Collie Check

MOMENT IN TIME – McPain – for Champs

BEST GAME DAY PHOTO - Pukeahontas – face smoosh in Copenhagen

MARY BERRY AWARD FOR BAKING - Trojan Virus

WELL ARRG - Caitlin O’Carroll 

FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE AWARD FOR FIRST AIDING - Lisa Alexander

PARTY ARRG - Lex Louthor

SPORT AWARD - Chasing Katy

FUNDRAISER OF THE YEAR - Lady Scrapnell

LEADERSHIP AWARD –  Doom 

BIG IDEA AWARD – Skinner

INSPIRATION AWARD - LL Cool Gay      

SPECIAL RECOGNITION – Stitches

ARRG AWARD – FOR OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION –  Princess Die

 

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Featured Skater – Dita Von Cheese!

Dita Von Cheese #000

This month, we are super excited to feature a skater who we have all admired for years, who amazingly transferred to us last summer. We were all delighted when we got the email from DVC asking to join ARRG! She’s come along and fitted in perfectly with ARRG – mainly because she’s absolutely lovely, but also her incredible skating ability has helped! Her dedication and super hard work ethic quickly earned her a spot on the Skatefast Club, as well as both our All Star and All Star Reserves rosters. We loved having her in Home Season, and can’t wait to play with her on our travel teams!

Joined ARRG in: August 2015 as a Transfer Skater

 Role in ARRG: Travel team skater

Favourite position to play: I love playing every position! I love a good wee jam here and there, but there is nothing more satisfying that hitting your pals in the ribs when they aren’t paying attention :D

 Your Derby story – why are you here?  I started roller blading when I was younger and then stopped because I discovered boys and drinking beside the ‘Green Shed’ in my home town.  I went to uni, got some jobs, became a postlady, worked in an office and was so incredibly bored.  I joined a judo class and a girl there mentioned roller derby and I was immediately interested.  I joined FVRG in 2011 and skated on their travel team for the last 3 years.  A lot of things changed in this last year: I got an amazing new job after spending a year looking, I became single and renting my own flat, and I decided that I wanted a new challenge.  I found my self thinking about ARRG and all of the times I had watched them and admired them from afar.  I decided that my 5 year goal was to get on Team Scotland and to do that I needed to ramp up my skills. So I transferred to ARRG in August and although I still think about my 5 year plan, I’ve been taken aback by how lovely and welcoming everyone has been and actually I don’t care if I don’t get to reach my goal, I’m enjoying the journey with all these lovely folk :D

 Best derby-related advice: Work hard, sweat lots and be nice.

 What you do for the league aside from skating: I am a Fresh Meat Coach and Visiting Skater Liaison and provider of food

 Any funny/embarrassing derby stories: I have many, but generally they all involve me getting hit really hard and thinking I’ve wet myself…

 Derby Hero: My derby Hero is my old pal Fun Ghoul from FVRG. I have always looked up to her in the way that she skates and constantly thinks about derby. She has helped shape my whole attitude towards derby. Cheers chum!

 What do you do outside of derby: I work as an administrator for Triathlon Scotland, so lots of juggling of everything and anything.  I get lots of enquiries about doing triathlons so Ive decided to train to do one as this will be first hand experience.  Yikes. I like making stuff and fixing things. I absolutely love weeding, my dad lived out in the sticks and I would help him weed and build dry stone walls during the summer.  I also like climbing trees, its been a while but I find myself driving on the motor way and noticing a nice wee tree that I like the look of. Then I remember I need to stop staring at trees and watch the road.  I’ve been hitting the skate park ( and face planting the floor) on a pair of blades I’ve borrowed, its great fun and good for your balance!

 Fun fact about you: Ive played the cello for over 20 years and was heckled at a gig in Strathaven :(

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Featured Official – Faerie Nuff!

This month, we are showcasing the fabulous Faerie Nuff! Faerie has been with ARRG for a long time, 5 and a half years, and recently reached her 100th game as a referee! Faerie is a cool, relaxed referee, with incredible knowledge and manages to exude professionalism whilst maintaining a sense of fun – get her at an afterparty and you’ll know what we mean!

Joined ARRG in: April 2010

Role in ARRG: Referee

Favourite position to officiate: Inside Pack Referee (IPR)

Your Derby story – why are you here?: I was introduced to derby in February 2010 by Blackjack Belle (who was with ARRG but is now in Newcastle and skates with NRG). About 10 minutes in to the first game I realised I wanted to be involved and signed up for fresh meat starting in April. I trained as a skater for a while but damaged my knee about 4 months after starting so was off skates and on crutches for months. During this time I NSOd pretty much every game and scrimmage going and loved it. It was then I decided when I got back on skates I was going to be a referee and I’ve been doing that ever since. I’ve now passed the 100 game mark for refereeing and have done around 150 games in total as an official, counting NSOing.

Best official-related advice: Erm, read the rules? Often. :)

What you do for the league aside from officiating: I am involved with the training and development of our skating officials. I often head referee games.

Any funny/embarrassing officiating stories: One time when I was travelling to Norway to referee, I left my luggage (and the majority of my kit) at home. I realised when I arrived at the airport (3 hours away from home) that the only things I had with me were my skates, stripes and passport. As the flight was 1 hour later, there wasn’t time to go home, so I had to borrow kit from some lovely Norwegian skaters.

Derby Hero: There are so many awesome people out there, I couldn’t single one out.

What do you do outside of derby: I am a qualified accountant and work in business analysis. In my non – derby free time I volunteer on a widening access Schools for Higher Education Programme. More recently have been spending time sorting and packing humanitarian aid destined for refugees displaced by war.

Fun fact about you: I’m super sensitive to sugar and tend to get a bit hyperactive. Those in the know have prohibited anyone giving me anything sugary on game day…at least until in the changing room after, or at the after party! Thereafter, everyone encourages me to have the sugar! :)

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