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Roller derby comes to Marathon Park in Wausau
WAUSAU - The Marathon Park Ice Rinks in Wausau still get some use in the summer.

You won't find any ice in there, although you will see skates.

Marathon Park played host to the fifth annual Uff Da Palooza roller derby tournament.

Teams from California to Illinois played in it, but people really turned out to see the Mid-State Sisters of Skate.

They're a roller derby team based out of Stevens Point that can count on strong fan support at their home tournament.

They say a weekend like this is great for teaching people the game.

"A lot of people say they didn't realize how involved it is and how much strategy is involved," Mid-State skater Rachel Reed said. "They have this picture of roller derby where you skate around in circles and hit each other. But there's so much more to it in terms of strategy, point scoring, things like that."

One of the odd things you'll notice when you look at a roller derby roster, is that you won't see anyone's real name.

Instead, you'll find names like Giant Slayer or Bubble Wrap.

Those nicknames are callbacks to previous generations of roller derby.

"Derby was something a lot of people watched on TV in the 60s and 70s," team president Kristen Biadasz said. "People used their real names but eventually, people started picking names as their alter ego, or 'I'm a this by day and this by night.' It's kind of one of those leftovers from that age."

The tournament will run until roughly 9 p.m. Sunday.

Story By: Andrew Goldstein


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