By Erin Pagel (aka PB and Jam)
Intense and tough, the world of roller derby has long been a unique form of entertainment for both athletes and spectators. Team and athlete names commonly project a menacing aura and at times have been criticized as insensitive. With respect at the forefront, and along with many professional and amateur sports teams nationally, Rochester’s only roller derby team has rebranded to be more respectful and inclusive of our community and all of its members.
Meet MedCity Roller Derby
Known as the MedCity Mafia since the team was founded in 2012, the team has removed “mafia” from its name and logo. Goodbye, MedCity Mafia and hello, MedCity Roller Derby. According to the team’s Board of Directors, the change was “to be more cognizant of the many cultures represented in our community and be respectful of them.”
The Board of Directors also notes that the name shift coincides with a culture shift within the world of roller derby. Many leagues, nearby and internationally, have also changed their names to be more respectful and inclusive. The original name was chosen because it “sounded tough, which was very common in the world of roller derby,” says the team’s Board of Directors. “The new name better aligns with the culture we want to promote and grow in our league and in the Rochester community.”
Keep in Touch with MedCity Roller Derby
It is currently unclear what MedCity Roller Derby’s 2021-2022 season will hold. The team will provide updates to fans when more is known. Follow MedCity Roller Derby on Facebook and Instagram to stay in the loop.
If you’re interested in learning about roller derby or you’d like to join the team, please connect via social media. The league is always looking for new team members ready to work hard and learn an amazing sport.
Erin Pagel (aka PB & Jam) is a freelance writer living in Rochester and skating with MedCity Roller Derby.