We hope the new year has been treating all of you well!  HRD is rolling into 2012 with smiles on our faces – our months (years, even) of hard work toward becoming a member of the WFTDA (Women’s Flat-Track Derby Association) have finally paid off!  We graduated this month, which not only brings us into the international bouting arena, but also gives us a say in how the future of the sport develops.  We’re already diving into discussions about rules changes, and gearing up for our first big WFTDA tournament next month in Eugene, OR.  If you’re in the neighborhood (or can be), check us out at the “Big O” from February 10-12!

We’re still pinning down the final details of our 2012 bout schedule, but we can tell you that we’ll be playing some pretty hardcore teams from all over the west coast this season – both at home and away.  Our first bout of the year will be Saturday, March 24th, against two killer WFTDA teams from the Bay Area Derby (B.A.D.) Girls – watch for tickets at the usual outlets (including online) around March 3rd.  If you’re a totally die-hard derby fan, you can even buy season passes (we consider those an individual-level sponsorship) at humboldtrollerderby.com.  One of those will get you into every single bout this season and you’ll never have to worry about tickets being sold out!

It’s also time again to honor one of our own, who happens to be one of our longest-standing (or longest-skating?) members.  Give it up for January’s Skater of the Month, Grrrl Haggard!

Grrrl has been with HRD since our humble beginnings (2007), and has helped immeasurably to build us into the league we are today.  She’s constantly at the forefront of what’s going on with the league, helping to solve problems and make us the best we can be.  Jenneral Ms.Chief (HRD’s founder) describes her as “a bundle of talent, integrity, drive and amazing attributes” – we are always impressed with Grrrl’s skills and demeanor, both on and off the track.

“She will tear you up,” says Jenneral.  “My most memorable derby moments are with Grrrl’s body swooping across me, and instantly I am staring at the concrete wondering how that just happened.  She is a tough, steady, and skilled roller derby player that goes into battle with an aggressive focus.  It makes you glad she is on your team!”

Did we mention she also has a fabulous singing voice?  If you’re lucky, you might have seen her perform the National Anthem at home bouts over the years.

When she’s off her skates (which we don’t see often), Grrrl says she loves step aerobics and enjoys taking care of her four bantam hens – Flaca, Blanca, Yolanda, and Mrs. Garrett.  She’s traveled to Mexico already this year and is preparing for another trip to Israel in February.  She’s super modest about her great qualities and accomplishments, but we don’t have enough positive things to say about her.  She’s always classy, professional, dependable, and friendly – as Jenneral puts it, “she can make a stranger feel like a best friend.”

We could go on for days, but suffice it to say that we love Grrrl, and we’re proud to call her one of our own!  None of us ever wants to end up skating for the other team when Grrrl’s out on the track.

Stay tuned for more exciting updates about our upcoming season, and our Volunteers of the Quarter!