Rat City Rollergirls

The four-team Rat City Rollergirls league that regularly sells out KeyArena's lower bowl is a long way removed from its local roots. Ten miles to be precise. For as the league's moniker suggests, it held its first bouts at the 300-capacity Southgate Roller Rink in White Center (aka Rat City) in 2004. “White Center is a great little pocket of culture—it transports you before you come into the rink,” recalls former Grave Danger skater Sandy Glaze (derby name: “Ann Munition”). Southgate, she adds, “smelled like old '70s carpet. It was such a visceral experience. You were landing in fans' laps, and it's really hard to get back up when you're in a pool of beer." It wasn't long before the Rollergirls grew out of the rink, and Southgate went dark as the Rollergirls helped fill the Sonics' void up north. Yet Southgate reopened on April 7 with the promise of frequent Rollergirl reunions, the first of which comes this Sunday morning, as the league's all-stars face a team from Texas. There are no Pabst kegs at Southgate (yet), and the musty carpet smell has been eradicated (for now). But it still marks a gleeful homecoming for White Center's hometown heroines. (See ratcityrollergirls.com for price and other info.) MIKE SEELY

Sun., May 22, 10 a.m., 2011

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