In November 2013, the Cape Town Rollergirls participated in the very first Rockabilly Festival on the N7 Ostrich Farm, Cape Town, South Africa, and in 2014 . The Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells organisers, Maria and Zigi, threw a great festival packed with all things rockabilly and brought the 50s sub-culture to life.
“Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells were inspired to create a platform where all related aspects of Rockabilly culture can be celebrated together – from classic cars, custom bikes and a dirt track to the thrills of the roller derby, fashion to food, and a healthy dose of live Rockabilly music and other entertainment to take festival goers all the way from noon to midnight.” Insert from here, you can also find out more about the festival on their website.
It was a great experience with a lineup of local band, rad food trucks, hot rods all over, a burlesque show by the lovely Rougettes of The Rouge Revue, swing dancing, bike polo by the Fishoek Bike Polo team (who are incredibly friendly guys who helped us set our track up after their game), accessible toilets, the rugby showing in the bar tent, ATM, parking space, Scar Hair Styling station and a Mac Make Up station. I got my make up done by Gareth from Mac and of course I got my hair did at Scar.
We had a stand where we recruited new members and sold league merchandise, including T-shirts, stickers and badges. We also held a raffle, auctioning off a rad CTR Merchandise Hamper, and a sponsored skateboard deck by Velocity Skate Worx, to support and send Team South Africa Roller Derby to Texas for the Blood and Thunder World Cup. We actually have three skaters in the league who made it to the national squad, Gazelle and on reserve Red Mist and G.I Jo Jo – so we’ll be streaming the games live to support the team.
Picture by Bianca Louw
As the Cape Town Rollergirls, we held an exhibition bout, on a much smaller track than what our girls are used to, to give the festival-goers a little taste of what we do. Being injured I couldn’t play roller derby with the rest of the skaters, and opted to announce (seeing as roller derby is such a new sport in South Africa, it’s important that the audience knows what’s going on). And, what a game! Afterwards, the best was hearing a little girl tug at her mom, saying, ‘Mommy mommy, look there’s Hooligan Barbie!’.
Pivot-blocker Red Mist ready to stop jammer Harley Quinn from scoring points.
Pivot-blocker Gazelle taking on jammer Hooligan Barbie
Blockers Melevolent and Rose from the Dead taking on jammer Harley Quinn
Action pictures by Robin Koehorst
Dusty Rebels and the Bombshells, the Cape Town Rollergirls will be back for you again next year.