Stadium request

Re: Request to use stadium for Women’s Roller Derby bouts

Dear Board, Thank you for taking the time to consider our request. Wollongong Illawarra Roller Derby (WIRD) is developing the radical and empowering sport of women’s Roller Derby in Wollongong in 2009.

In case you don’t remember the game from its heyday in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, I’ll give you a quick run-down. The game is sixty minutes of furious action as two teams of skaters compete for glory and points. It’s played on old style quad roller skates with a full complement of safety gear. Players push themselves to the limit for the fun and competition – which makes it a great spectator sport!

Roller Derby has been having a revival all over the world. There are eighteen leagues operating in Australia, and five in NSW and the ACT. There are movements towards establishing both state and national competitions for this amazing sport. We intend to make WIRD leaders in this national competition! The community building aspects of this sport, as well as its promotion of health and fitness for all participants make it a perfect fit for the sporting community of the Illawarra.

WIRD has been in training since February 2009 and currently have thirteen active skaters, insurance, an indoor training venue and a dedicated and experienced training team. We also have a whole lot of hard work in front of us. Recently a group of our skaters attended a two-day derby camp with Sydney Roller Derby League, bringing home a whole new bunch of skills. With these skills, our brutal determination and the ongoing training we’ve hooked up with Sydney Roller Derby League, it looks good for us to be holding our first public bouts around October 2009.

We would be interested in using the **** Stadium as a venue for our bouts. These games will take place once a month and we would like to begin these around October or November of this year. For the events we will need at least one court, the lights and some seating for approximately four hours. We expect between thirty and fifty spectators for these initial bouts and we will have between fifteen and twenty skaters.

I understand that your floor is very valuable and that you may have serious concerns about our skates damaging the surface. I would like to attempt to set your mind to rest on this matter as I understand that some skate sports could do a lot of harm to your soft floor.

The skates that our players wear are leather and rubber, similar in composition to hockey shoes. Our Code of Conduct requires all skaters to ensure that all metal parts on the skates are in good condition and that no bolts extend past the edge of the wheel and the Coaching team check this regularly. The wheels themselves are indoor roller skating wheels made of reasonably firm rubber. The lighter coloured wheels would be very unlikely to leave any marks on your floor and we can make that a prerequisite for skating at the venue. Aside from this, the toes of the skates are covered with leather toe guards which prevent the laces or toe of the boot scraping the floor. All players also wear knee guards, elbow guards, wrist guards and helmets. There is a significant amount of sliding on the knees and so to prevent damage from the knee pads our skaters wear legwarmers over the pads. Many of our members are also purchasing white knee pads for this reason. Finally, players are not allowed to wear any sharp jewellery, studs or even jeans with rivets while skating and we are covered for $20,000,000 public liability insurance.

If you have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to contact me. If you would like, I can also arrange for some of our skaters to come and show you their skates and possibly demonstrate some knee slides on a small corner of the floor.

I thank you again for taking the time to read our submission. To provide you with information to make an informed decision, please also find attached copies of references from sporting venues provided to the **** Roller Derby League and *** Roller Derby League and our League’s Code of Conduct.

Yours sincerely,
She’Na Nigans

(If you are in Australia and are looking for references from derby friendly venues, please drop me an email at wird.shena.nigans@gmail.com)

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