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Tar Sand Betties ready to roll to Newfoundland

Last Updated Jul 18, 2019 at 3:32 pm MDT

PHOTO. Members of the Tar Sand Betties roller derby team participate at the Canada Day Parade on July 1, 2019, in downtown Fort McMurray. Supplied by the Fort McMurray Roller Derby League.

The Fort McMurray Roller Derby League is heading to Newfoundland.

The Tar Sand Betties made the official announcement on their Facebook with an event post.

Fundraising began early this year, with the team raising $4500 through sponsorships, donations, and various fundraisers.

League treasurer, Kim Wheeler, said the squad is thankful for the support of the business community.

“Our target was for $5000, so we got pretty close. There’s still an opportunity to donate: Companies can come through with a sponsorship, [and] we have our GoFundMe campaign.” 

The money will cover the travel and lodging costs for both coach and players.

Unfortunately, organizers cancelled the junior game, which would feature the Athabashers, due to low turnout.

However, Wheeler said any remaining funds will go toward developing the junior squad.

As for the game, the Tar Sand Betties will play the 709 Roller Derby League in St. John’s, Nfld., on August 3, 2019.

Wheeler, who skates under the name “Rotten Brotten”, said the team looks forward to representing Fort McMurray on the national stage.

“It’s definitely a new opportunity to play teams that we have never played before. We have no idea what their strategies are going to be or how their playstyle is, so it’s going to be an entirely new experience which is very exciting.”

She added some of the players have family and friends in Newfoundland, so it’s a homecoming of sorts.

The Betties will play the St. John’s Vixens and Never Sweets in a special doubleheader event.

A list of Fort McMurray Roller Derby teams, players, and information about the trip are available on their website.