|What Junior Gems being awesome may look like. Photo Credit: Jeff Boerio / www.rockinbdigital.com|
For the first time in Eugene/Springfield history, boys will have an opportunity to participate in junior roller derby. The Emerald City Junior Gems are opening up registration to boys ages 10-17 to play roller derby this season. This pilot project comes with support from various places from veteran Junior Gems all the way up to the greater trend of mutual support for co-ed derby from the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association and Men’s Roller Derby Association, governing bodies for their respective genders.
“We would like to invite boys to skate with the girls this year. Our hope is that things will go smoothly, and we can grow the league to include boys permanently. This is in the very beginning stages,” Junior Gems Director Cold Hard Crash said. “The only details we know for sure are that the boys will start in the modified division just like the girls and will have to be evaluated for skills and safety prior to moving into the full-contact division.”
The Emerald City Junior Gems are under the umbrella of the Emerald City Roller Girls. The Emerald City Roller Girls do not currently have an official place for men’s players, though they regularly practice, scrimmage, and bout with members of the Lane County Concussion men’s team. It is unclear what the Lane County Concussion’s involvement will be with the Junior Gems, though they have often lent a hand by officiating and helping out with Gems practices in the past. The inclusion of boys will likely lead to more Lane County Concussion volunteering in Junior Gems practices.
Registration takes place Monday, September 23rd at 5pm at Willamalane Center in Springfield and is open to all boys and girls ages 10-17 interested in playing roller derby. Skaters should be sure to arrive with skates, elbow pads, knee pads, wrist guards, helmets, and mouth guards. For more information, visit the Facebook event.