Poke A. Dot
OG Skater, Den Mother, President, WFTDA Rep2018-03-11
Poke joined CCRG during the summer of 2006. She was introduced to roller derby in Austin, Texas during a professional conference. She describes seeing her first bout, the Texas Rollergirls played the Tucson Roller Derby and talks about the campy, tongue-in-cheek characteristics of roller derby that attracted her to it. When she came home to Athens, she went to the first fundraiser at Skate Around U.S.A. She originally didn’t intend to play roller derby she just wanted the Athens league to succeed. Latina Thunder encouraged her to come and skate. She ended up joining the league and describes how skating was a stress relief and new friendships.
Poke describes the feminist and “DIY Punk” aesthetic of roller derby and how she was drawn to derby because of her roots in punk culture, as well as how she was drawn to the community service aspect of derby. She briefly discusses the kitchyness of derby, including the penalty wheel and having bands play during bout intermissions. She also talks about the league’s relationship with Skate Around U.S.A.
Poke lists some of the OGs and discusses some of the original members’ roles in taking charge of the league after Zombrella left and how the league structured itself, as well as the creation of the Dames of Maim and Hittin’ Misses. She also discusses the early importance of bout revenue in sustaining the league, and early efforts to get sponsorships and host fundraisers.
She discusses the first major loss of skaters and the high rates of burnout during the league’s early years, as well as the transient nature of the Athens community due to the university, as well as the difficulties with losing skaters to the Atlanta Rollergirls.
Poke explains the WFTDA apprenticeship program, the process of applying to be a WFTDA member and the league’s sentiments about applying for the apprenticeship program. Headless Highness from Kansas City was CCRG’s WFTDA mentor once the league was accepted as an apprentice, and Poke describes the items that CCRG had to complete to become a full WFTDA league. Poke also discusses CCRG’s relationships with several other southeastern leagues.