The sound of roller skates on hardwood drowned out the sounds Mick Jagger and Axl Rose, the noise of hard plastic meeting the gym floor rebounding off the walls as young girls skate the circumference of the QJS gym, or do pushups and sit ups in the middle of the oval. But no matter the volume in the gym, the noise can never match how loud the outfits get.
Like a rainbow came down and blessed the young derby girls, a riot of shades plays across almost every girl and, like a velvet Elvis it’s backed by black.
The Gold Nuggets began three years ago, after one of the Derby Girl’s daughter talked her mother into making something happen.
“I’ve been watching her play for a while and my dad’s the head ref in Quesnel,” Sierra Bird, daughter of Gold Pain Derby Girls’ jammer Jennifer Bird.
“My little sister and I got our first skates four years ago so derby was something we all wanted to do as a family. I talked to my parents and it took a couple years, but they started the brats and the little league for Aurora.”
The Gold Nuggets Junior Roller Derby covers young ladies from 7 – 18 years-old and their enthusiasm is obvious, from their derby outfits to smiles on their faces as they race around the gym.
It’s the speed and grace of the skates that keeps most of the girls coming back.
“I love it – I just love the skating,” Hailey (Hail Storm) Soderman, 15 said.
After the girls do their warm up, skating around the gym in a dizzying array and doing a variety of exercises in the centre, they move onto a variety of games.
From tag to obstacle courses, the girls practice all manner of manoeuvrability on their skates.
The sport has slowly grown here for the young people by word of mouth and the joy of flying along the flat track, which lures the girls back after their first practice
“I came out one night and tried out some skates and liked it so I came back,” Makhayla (Mia Psycho) Ramage said.
And the parents like it because it’s more than just a sports team, where winning is everything. Inclusion, on the Gold Nuggets team, is one of the most important factors.
The mission of the Gold Nuggets, according to the team, is to nurture bold self-confidence in young women by developing teamwork and athletic ability while treasuring individuality, within a culture of sisterhood, encouragement and service to others.
Currently, the Gold Nuggets are fund raising to help pay for their first ever tournament, if all goes to plan, in Edmonton, with other young teams from around Western Canada.
Meanwhile, the elder derby girls, Gold Pain, are ramping up for their Moustache Madness Derby, versus the Rated P.G. Derby Girls, April 5.
For information on the bout and where to get tickets, or how to get involved with the nuggets, go to the Gold Pain Facebook page.