Tracker Pixel for Entry

After 10 Years FM Derby Girls Still Believe

by HPR Contributor | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | Culture | September 13th, 2018

by Ryan Janke
ryanjanke@hpr1.com

Ten years ago a group of individuals came together in pursuit of a common goal-to create a roller derby team in the Fargo-Moorhead area. That goal became a reality and now, nine seasons later, they are still skating and working to be a positive force in the community. They were guided by this common goal and borrowed a theme from the band Journey. It was, “don’t stop believing.”

FM Derby Girls has seen several changes and reinventions since forming a decade ago. They have changed venues from the Fargo Civic Center downtown, to Skateland (now Skate City), to their current main venue-Southwest Youth Arena in south Fargo. Although they have most of their bouts at the Southwest Youth Arena, they still hold one match per year at the Fargo Civic Center.

They have also seen a change in their season. They used to hold their bouts in the Fall and Winter, but that has since changed to more of a Spring and Summer schedule. Fortunately for the organization, the change in season schedule and venue from downtown to southwest Fargo did not come with loss of fans. Interleague liaison Beth Ambrosio says their fans are very loyal and committed to the FM Derby Girls.

The organization has also changed some of their focus. While they still have the passion to skate, they also want to become better skaters, develop other physical skills, and build community. For the FM Derby Girls, the focus is not so much on statistics, but on continual improvement.

Ambrosio, better known by FM Derby Girls fans as Maulflower, says one of her main focuses is building community and empowering women. “I do believe [roller derby] is a very positive force in people’s lives and can build a very positive community,” she says. She also believes the sport’s early embrace of the LGBTQ community points to their commitment to that same goal.

FM Derby Girls is an all volunteer, nonprofit organization, so it takes a certain amount of commitment to keep the organization running. There are 10 active skaters as well as referees and coaches who all work together. Besides their commitment to making sure matches are scheduled, sponsors are contacted, and other duties are getting done, the team holds practice twice a week for two hours at a time. According to Ambrosio, it is a time commitment that can feel like a part-time job at times, but there is a strong belief in roller derby among the organization.

During the upcoming off-season, the team will hold training for veterans and new recruits called, “fresh meat.” It is a time to train as a team and find out if the new recruits have the fundamental skills necessary to safely skate in a sport where one wrong move can have serious consequences. Ambrosio says they will also focus on aspects such as rules, track awareness, recognizing specific maneuvers, and strategy.

Ambrosio says the FM Derby Girls are constantly reinventing themselves in order to change and grow individually and as a group. She says, “every bout is a chance to play roller derby and keep believing.”

The FM Derby Girls will hold their final bout against the Sioux Falls Roller Dollz this Saturday at the Southwest Youth Arena.

IF YOU GO:

LIVE Roller Derby: Season 9 finale

Saturday, September 15, 5-8pm

Southwest Arena, 4404 23rd Ave S, Fargo

Recently in:

After nearly two and a half years since the people of North Dakota voted to pass the Compassionate Care Act into law in the state, medical marijuana is finally available to patients. Only one dispensary is open right now, but seven…

It was an, “aha,” moment, said Jeremy Jensen. A woman had her vehicle towed into the Fix It Forward Auto Care shop in Moorhead. Jensen and fellow Fix It Forward Auto Care co-founder Matt Carlson had the vehicle on a hoist…

Thursday, April 18, 5-9 p.m.Drekker Brewing Company, 1666 1st Ave N, FargoThe folks at Drekker have partnered with a handful of area artists and the Lend A Hand Up program. A program providing help and hope to families facing…

In 2016, the Rand Corportation’s National Defense Research Institute published a year-long study looking at potential consequences for transgender members to serve within the U.S Military. This study looked at seven different…

The Nordic ModelDr. Thea Hunter, a graduate of Columbia University and an adjunct professor of history at a number of elite colleges and universities, recently died at age 63 of extreme capitalism—and asthma—because of lack of…

Cocktail Showdown

​Yo ho ho!

by Sabrina Hornung

Well shiver me timbers. After weeks of sampling some of the finest drinks in F-M from more bars than we could shake a belaying pin at, the results of High Plains Reader’s 6th Annual Cocktail Showdown are in! For nine weeks,…

After three years Jon Beyer aka “Jonny B” has become the face and the beard behind Jonny B’s Brickhouse in Jamestown North Dakota. Besides the largest selection of craft beers between here and Bismarck, wood-fired pizzas and…

By Gary Usseryusseryg@gmail.comFYB. Three letters, three words, well known by the guys who make up Cascades, and anyone who is a fan of the five-man band. When asked what genre best describes their sound, I was bombarded with at…

Harmony Korine keeps a tight grip on his title as one of the most critic/critique-proof filmmakers of recent times with “The Beach Bum,” a sultry companion piece to 2012’s memorable “Spring Breakers.” Not without its own…

Arts

​Hold your head high

by Sabrina Hornung

“I started to look around at state arts council positions because I felt that even though I had never done that, I felt like it would be a really good blend of skills, so I started to look around in 2016. A few jobs came up but I…

Countless examples can be found throughout the history of great art that was only recognized as such after the life of the artist that created it. Such is true of Georges Bizet’s opera "Carmen."  While its reception during his…

Stand-up comedy is traditionally a one-way exchange. Outside of the odd question addressed to a random audience member, the limit of the spectators’ contribution to the conversation is their laughter at the comedy stylings being…

By Gabrielle Herschgabbyhersch@gmail.comThink & Drink is coming to Fargo! Organized by Humanities North Dakota, Think & Drink is a happy hour series that hosts a facilitated public conversation about big issues and ideas. Lead by a…

I’m a big man, I’m tall and powerful, but this also causes some issues in the body department. I suffer from acute scoliosis in my lower back, and pain radiates from this area on a daily basis. I have only ever had one massage…

by Devin Joubertdevinlillianjoubert@gmail.comIt’s that beautiful time of the year that’s filled with seasonal decorations, sparkly lights, warm family gatherings, and delicious feasts. I love everything about this time of the…

It seems like the threats to North Dakota’s Badlands never cease. Let’s go back and revisit Wylie Bice. He’s the rogue, rich, rancher up in Dunn County, on the eastern edge of the Badlands, who’s built himself a private…