It will be a dream realized for the Southland Slashers Roller Derby team. With deep roots in the ares, the non-profit organization will finally host its first-bout ever on Friday at Channahon's Skateland Roller Rink.
Demand for the event has been so great in the days leading up to it that the facility is sold out, which is a good predicament for the league to be in.
"The idea was to pre-sale the event on line and then sell the remaining tickets at the door," Southland Slashers public relations director Wylde Lil Hipcheck said. "It's definitely something that is exciting for the community, the friends and families, and the ticket sales show that."
Capacity of the Channahon Roller Rink is 310 bodies, which not only includes the paying public, but participants, coaches, referees and the like.
"There are also 10 Skateland employees and we have several NSOs which help is run the event," Hipcheck said. "But all the rest to the general public as sold out."
Saturday will be the first of what the Slashers are hoping will be a long line of home sellouts, even if the hosting site has to move to accommodate their fans.
"Godley has been our main home for a while now, we practice in the Park District gymnasium once a week," Hipcheck said. "Now we've added a second night of practice at Skateland. This is our first home bout but we would like to find something bigger for the fans and the girls."
The Slashers have been involved in several events in the past, all of them being on the road in places like Peoria and Bloomington in Illinois and parts of Iowa, Wisconsin and Indiana. The team has been around for a little over two years now, playing in bouts and mixers with the other teams they've traveled to. This season, including home and away bouts, the Slashers will be engaged about six times this year.
The organization currently supports an adult women's league and a junior girls league for those between the ages of 10 and 18. The Slashers are also trying to add a men's league in the future. There will be practice and tryouts for all three groups in the near future.
If you are interested in being a part of the local roller derby scene and the Southland Slashers, you can visit the team's website at southlandslashers.com or the team's Facebook page.