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Roller derby team to host fundraiser

DeKALB – DeKalb’s roller derby team has hit a few bumps in the road trying to find a local setting to host its bouts.

Gretel Pfeifer, a member of the DeKalb Barbed Wire Betties, said the team’s goal is to find a local place to play by September.

In the meantine, the Betties have been practicing three times a week at Kishwaukee YMCA and driving to play against other teams, which are as far away as Wisconsin and Indiana.

“We’re trying to find space that would hold our track as space, but it’s a little difficult,” Pfeifer said. “There are some wonderful vendors in the area, but they’re not quite sure what our roller skates are going to do to their floor.”

That’s why the Betties decided to hold a fundraiser to help purchase a portable floor to use for bouts in the DeKalb area.

The “Bowling With the Betties” fundraiser will take place from 6:30 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday at Four Seasons Sports and Lost Mine Lounge, 1745 DeKalb Ave., Sycamore.

Locals will be able to bowl for $15 a person or $25 a couple, eat appetizers, participate in raffles or a crazy sock contest, and listen to music by local bands The Buckshot Hounds and Hijee.

Bowling tickets include three games and shoe rental. All proceeds will benefit the floor purchase.

The Betties have spoken with local schools about using school gyms to host their bouts. There has even been talk of hosting bouts at the former DeKalb High School location, said Vanessa Roeder, the Betties’ head of marketing.

The team practices at the YMCA from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesdays, 8 to 10 p.m. Fridays and from 8 to 10 a.m. Sundays. The schedule will change in the spring, Pfeifer said.

The Betties also are looking for referees and nonskating officials. Anyone interested would be required to attend practices and learn the rules of roller derby, Pfeifer said.

The Betties are constantly hearing from fans that they love to watch the team compete, but travel is difficult when the team is going out-of-state, Roeder said.

“We travel pretty far,” Roeder said. “It would be nice if we could [have bouts] close to home and have our family and friends come.”

To become a part of the Barbed Wire Betties team or for more information, email or visit

If you go

What: Bowling With the Betties fundraiser

When: 6:30 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday

Where: Four Seasons Sports and Lost Mine Lounge, 1745 DeKalb Ave., Sycamore

Why: All proceeds will help the team purchase a portable floor to use for bouts in the DeKalb area.

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