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April 7, 2010

Charm City Roller Girls see record crowds, contemplate move

the charm city roller girlsThe Charm City Roller Girls need a bigger place to play.

For the past few years, Baltimore's all-female roller derby league has performed at Du Burns Arena in Canton. These days, Du Burns is starting to feel a little snug for the Roller Girls.

Approximately 1,800 people have turned out for the past few bouts this season, according to roller girl Hilary "Rosie the Riveter Rioter" Rosensteel. They've had to turn away people from at least one event.

"The crowds keep topping off," she said. "We're going to have to look somewhere else." ...

The only feasible alternative would be 1st Mariner Arena, Rosensteel said. Even if the arena staff cordons off upper sections, limiting the number of seats to 5,000, that still might make it too big.

"We'd have to work on our marketing," she said. "I bet we could bring in more people, but I don't know."

Such a move wouldn't be out of the ordinary. Roller derby leagues in Seattle and Chicago are consistently bringing in crowds of around 5,000, Rosensteel said. But the girls would be sad to say goodbye to Du Burns.

"Du Burns has been unbelievably welcoming and friendly."

At least Mayor Stephanie C. Rawlings-Blake is on their side. Not only has Rawlings-Blake been to at least one bout, she wanted to join the team at one point, according to spokesman Ryan O'Doherty.

"She expressed sincere interest, but being a mother and a mayor makes for a packed schedule," he wrote in an e-mail.

Ms. Mayor, please let me know if you change your mind. I'd love to see you get in the rink and cause a ruckus.

(Photo by Seth Sawyers)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 7:30 AM | | Comments (6)
Categories: Random stuff


FYI, the picture above is not from DuBurns, but from the Baltimore Armory, where CCRG bouted for a short time a few seasons ago.

Also, that's my photo, not the league's.

@JZ, I never said it was a photo of Du Burns. I just like the photo.

@Sidewalk Flying, Hilary said it was fine to copy a photo from the Flikr page. I'm more than happy to give you a photo credit. Email me your name, and I'll update the caption. My address is

Hilary's derby alias is actually Rosie the Rioter. :)

Good for Charm City. They're a very talented league and deserve the growth in audience.

Also, the mayor sounds like a cool chick! Sadly, we in Los Angeles are stuck with a greaseball like Villairaigosa. Wish DC's mayor would come west.

I'm sure the Towson Center would be the right size

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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