Conference Preparation: where to see roller derby in Toronto

Since we librarians tend to be a keen bunch, I thought I’d post a little bit of extra credit work for my session on Tuesday, Lessons from the Flat Track: How Being a Roller Girl Has Helped Me to be a Better Librarian. Whether you’re a seasoned fan (or even skater) or had to google “roller derby” just now, the APLIC conference and a trip to Toronto are 2 great reasons to get down and derby.

Toronto is a city with a whole lot of derby going on! Currently, there are 4 leagues running out of the city proper and tons more cropping up in the suburbs throughout the GTA. Last year we even hosted the first ever Roller Derby World Cup right here in town.

Fortunate timing for APLICers, September marks the end of the derby season in the city, which means there are some great games happening around the conference. For those who arrive a little bit early, the GTA Roller Girls will be hosting their end of season double header on Saturday the 15th. The arena isn’t downtown, but it is conveniently located on the subway line. For those sticking around a little later, Saturday the 22nd sees our city’s biggest league, ToRD, host their annual “Battle for the Boot” to determine the champs for 2012 season. Live Roller Derby is a fun and exciting spectator sport. It’s also a surprisingly family-friendly event, usually with halftime entertainment and an after party to boot!

For those of you who are missing out on Toronto weekends, there’s still plenty of opportunity to check out derby from the comfort of your couch. If you haven’t already seen it yet, allow me to reccomend the adorable 2009 film Whip It. Even if you’re not sold on derby, it’s a charming film with a nice smear of sports – something for everyone. Fun fact, Whip It premiered at the Toronto International Film Fest in 2009, with members of ToRD dressed up as Hurl Scouts, and performing in Yonge-Dundas Square!

For the armchair athlete with a penchant for documentary, let me suggest the excellent doc Blood on the Flat Track. It takes a look at the epic rise of derby in Seattle, including the people and hard work that go into making the sport what it is.

Both Whip It and Blood on the Flat Track are available on Netflix or your local video store (I’m told there are still a few of these out there). While in Toronto, also keep an eye on the local Rogers cable channel – they broadcast ToRD games periodically.

Roll on, APLIC!

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One Response to Conference Preparation: where to see roller derby in Toronto

  1. dawson says:

    nice to see another roller derby librarian!

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