Q: Do I have to pay to bring my boyfriend (or husband or girlfriend or kids or other non-skating pal)?
A: Anyone can stay at the hotel and attend the free (mostly social) events, but for entry into the skating areas, they’ll need a RollerCon Pass. Challenges, scrimmages, bouts, training, seminars, Vendor Village and more will be held at in the convention-passholders only area. Fortunately, passes are extremely inexpensive and include non-skater options.
Q: Can my family / friends come see me scrimmage?
A: Absolutely! Your family or friends can get a Spectator Pass (available in Spring) to come see you in the Riviera skating events. We will also be selling a very limited number of assigned seating tickets to our Skyboxes for dinner bouts in 2012. Stay tuned for information.
Q: Can I get a day pass?
A: No. Its too much work for our staff – so our compromise has been to make the MVP passes as cheap as Day Passes. In 2006 and 2007 we had day passes for $119. In 2012, Early Bird MVP passes were $89! See how that works?
Q: Can I shop in Vendor Village without buying a pass?
A: Yes. Some of them, at least! The Sin City Skates Gear Shop and a few private Sponsor Rooms are open to the general public. The vast majority of vendors will be in the Royale Ballroom surrounding the competition tracks. That area is only open to passholders.
Q: Should I get a pass if I’m injured and can’t skate?
A: RollerCon has over 14 categories of events (not 14 events – 14 CATEGORIES of events), and five of them, obviously among the most popular, are on-skates. But that leaves 9 more categories of events that aren’t on skates, plus the chance to watch & learn from on-skates events. Believe it or not, spending RollerCon off skates can actually be really fun because you’re not thoroughly exhausted and beat up from playing for 10 hours a day. All RollerCon events are wheelchair accessible. For athletes that are cleared for rec skating but not contact, we’ll have as many as 7 hours of open skate rink time available to you every day.
Q: Is it worth it for new skaters to come?
A: Oh boy, is it. RollerCon training camp offers amazing classes geared towards every skill level, and the seminars, vendors and social events are a newbie’s wet dreams even if you’re not safe to skate in a crowd yet. Want to try on pads? Curious to learn how to do a move better? Want to figure out how to organize committees in your league? RollerCon is the place to do it.
Q: Well, how about advanced skaters, who spend a fortune and all their vacation days on traveling to games already? Should they go?
A: There ARE a lot more drains on your brain, patience, time and discretionary income once you’ve made it to the travel team. RollerCon is just the cure for those Veteran Blues. Not only do you get to skate with & against peers in low-stress, max-fun challenges and scrimmages and learn awesome new skills from other advanced skaters on and off the track (ask about the Flabongo), but you can also dose back up on that early skater enthusiasm that’s easy to lose once you’re on 5 committees and captaining your team.
Q: Do I have to bring my team to be able to skate?
A: No. There will be open scrimmages, training on skates, and other opportunities for single skaters to have fun. If you want to participate in a scheduled Challenge, you must be on a challenge team, but you can join anyone’s challenge team. More info about Challenges. A forum where you can find a team to skate with. General info & more links about skating at RollerCon.
Q: Can I come if I’m underage?
A: Yes, there will be plenty of fun things for underage skaters to do! You will have access to all the workshops, training, skating, scrimmages and social events with one exception: you won’t be allowed in the bars and some of the 21+ social events. Sorry. JUNIOR skaters may attend, watch and assist in most training sessions at the coach’s discretion, however, there are insurance & liability rules that govern their behavior and interaction with adult skaters. Please check out the Juniors info here and more specific Junior info here. That said, Las Vegas isn’t a super kid-friendly town, and RollerCon is probably a lot more appropriate for older juniors than it is for skater tots. Everyone (especially some of you adults) should be supervised at all times for safety!
Q: Can I come if I’m a dude (or a banked track skater, or a member of an OSDA league, or an old-schooler, a Renegade, a garden gnome, a Laotian National, an Anarchist, or a member of any other group I think people might not like?)
A: Rollercon is not segregated in any way. Its for all roller derby players, league members, athletic supporters and fans, including the “super” variety. Check out more info here.
Q: How do I get my free or discounted pass for volunteering last year?
A: It will be emailed to you in Spring. All discounts are off the CHEAPEST General Admission MVP Pass, so don’t worry about the early bird deals you’re missing. MORE INFO and answers to a lot more questions about how volunteers get compensated are answered here.
Q: Can I buy passes for everyone on my league (or team or your wives or whatever)?
A: Yes, but it could be a hassle for you because each pass has to be associated with the person’s name on their drivers’ license and their insurance numbers. More info here.
Q: I can’t come after all. Can I give my pass away?
A: No. Here’s why.
Q: Can I skate without my helmet on or while missing some other gear?
A: NO. Your skates should be the last thing you put on and the first thing you take off. If RollerCon Volunteers catch you skating in any RollerCon-insured location while missing any piece of safety equipment, you will lose your badge.
Q: I heard there was going to be a banked track this year?
A: We have not secured a banked track for 2012, but its always a possibility. Never say never!
Q: What’s the dress code for the Black n Blue Ball?
A: Black and/or blue WHATEVER. No jeans or street clothes! But please do wear clothing of SOME kind. This event is open to the black-or-blue-clad over-21-ID-carrying public. And if you can’t wear it in a pool, you might want to reconsider. Then again, what use are sequins that can’t go in a pool?
Q: Where does a vegan eat in Las Vegas?
A: Check out a list of veggie/vegan-friendly restaurants here.
Q: Can I skate on the strip?
A: Weeeellllll, we’ve done it. But that was in the early years, before we had tracks in the hotel and so many opportunities to skate safely. If you decide to venture out on wheels, here’s what to know about skating on the Las Vegas Strip: its scary – everyone is drunk, clueless and they’ll block you from passing even if it means they step in your way at the last second. Tourists are permitted to walk around with adult beverages on the Strip, which means lots of stupid rookie drinkers with yard-long margaritas and football-shaped gallons of beer stumbling in your path. But don’t be tempted to skate on the street! The drivers are worse! Dazzled by the signs and lights and drunk about 70% of the time, the LAST place you want to find yourself – ever – is in a driving lane of the Strip without the protection of a car, especially at night. The cabs will actually aim to hit you. You will probably survive, though, if you wear outdoor wheels, consider carrying a light, and think about having the equivalent of a bicycle bell to let people know you’re behind them (not that many of them will care or bother to move their strollers & often very large derrieres out of your way). And don’t count on nice sidewalks. Several of the casinos switch to wooden boardwalks and weirder surfaces around their properties. That said, we did have fun doing it. But we’ll never do it again.
Q: Is it true you can drink anytime, anywhere in Las Vegas?
A: No. We have open container laws just like everyone else. However, they’re not enforced on *walkers* on the strip. So you can take your drink to and from casinos and walk around with it on Las Vegas Boulevard (aka the Strip) and under the awning at Fremont Street – but be polite and get a “to go” cup (or join the hordes rocking gigantic plastic souvenir cocktails) on the way out of the casino with your drink, or catch attitude from locals. Under no circumstances is drinking and driving legal, especially not on the Strip.
Q: Can I skate in the hotel?
A: NO. Wait, one more time, but louder: NOOOOOOO! Please use your head when you’re in RC events and locations. USARS and WFTDA insurance covers skating inside the track areas ONLY (during scheduled events and training). That’s it. Please keep your skates off til you get to one of those places. If you’re in a class and suddenly have to pee, please remove your skates and trot yourself to the loo, then put them back on when you get back to the track.
** Places you may especially NOT SKATE include: elevators, hallways, stairways, the casino, Top of the Riv, the pool, etc. If you want RollerCon to continue to be invited back, please respect and abide by the insurance and hotel safety rules. If you are stopped by volunteers, you could have your pass taken permanently.
Q: I don’t have USARS – can I still skate?
A: Depends. You must have derby insurance, but the common derby insurers are working together to try to make that less of a hassle for you. Check out our insurance page for more info. NO ONE may skate until they’ve stopped by the registration desk to have their insurance verified.
Q: Is RollerCon wheelchair-accessible?
A: Yes, and its especially accessible for attendees that can get out of their chair for a few seconds or be lifted. The whole city is pretty new, so our hotel and park facilities meet the highest standards of accessibility.
Q: Is there a deadline for RollerCon registration?
FLV Locals’ secrets:
- Valet parking is free. You don’t have to tip them, but come on. Give them at least a buck each when you drop off and pick up your car.
- Bellmen (and women) are free and the valet will call one for you. They’ll carry all your shit. Tip them at least a buck per bag.
- You get free drinks in casinos if you put money in the machine while you’re waiting for your drink, usually about $10. Its usually cheaper to buy your drink, though, not that any of you are likely to believe me.
- You have to have your ID to get in ANYWHERE, especially RollerCon badge events – including training, where your badge must match your ID – and all bars in Vegas. There are no exceptions.
A Few Words of Advice from RollerCon Attendees:
- Bring eye drops, especially if you wear contacts. Consider trying saline nasal spray to moisten your sinuses (which can crack and bleed) if you’re from somewhere humid (which is pretty much everywhere but Phoenix, when compared to Vegas). Challenges outdoors during the day on Fremont street are like playing with a blowdryer on high in your face the whole time.
- Bring chapstick and carry it with you everywhere. Chapped lips aren’t fun. Boxers put vaseline on their mouthguards to keep lips from sticking and chapping. Works for us, too.
- Bring extra skate laces, bearings, wheels, a skate tool (pack it in your check in or they will take it) etc.
- I HIGHLY recommend CARRY ON for your skatebag. Lost skates = no fun at RollerCon. Bring a change of clothes, your pads, helmet, etc. with you – worst that can happen is you wear the same clothes or cheap souvenir shirts every day – but you still get to skate. Put your name on all your shit.
- Don’t forget to drink a LOT of water. Especially if you drink alcohol at all.
- Aunt Flo, San Diego Derby Dolls
I can’t speak for everyone, and (when she wrote this, in 2007 or so) am FAR from a Rollercon Veteran, but here are my suggestions on packing:
- Don’t kid yourself about wearing jeans, pants, legwarmers, et. al. Remember it’s INCREDIBLY hot in Vegas in the summer.
- the Average High Temperature for Rollercon is 104°F (40°C) with a historical range of 86°F to 114°F. (30-46°C)
- The Average Low Temperature (in the wee hours of dawn) for Rollercon is 81°F (27°C) with a historical range of 70°F to 89°F. (21-32°C)
- There is a 99% chance of a Hot Day at Rollercon (temperature over 90°F / 32°C).
- Remember to hydrate. Seems like a der, but there’s lots of opportunities for adult beverages at Rollercon, and it’s very easy to forget that you’re in the middle of a desert. Water, water, water.
- Ask around with your leagues or newfound league friends to see if anyone has a vehicle or wants to split a cab to the store. It’s well worth hitting up a grocery store and stocking up on water and fruit and appropriate snacks. If you can’t hit up a grocery store, look around for the best deal on things like bottled water within walking distance. Don’t laugh, gramma’s biscuits might save you!
- Request a fridge! Last year it was $10 a day. Alternately, look into buying a cheap cooler when you make it to the store.
- Look around for cheap eats if you’re on a budget. There’s food deals to be had at casinos, and plenty of cheap eats within walking distance. There are also other budget-minded casinos within walking distance as well that may have some cheap options. Explore and conquer.
- Comfortable shoes, ESPECIALLY at derby wedding. I love heels. I love to wear them. High heels and jeans are the Rolling Stones of outfits. I’m not even bringing heels this trip.
- Bring league merch to trade. Pins, shirts, stickers…whatever. Personally, I find that the whole “shirt trade” thing works out better if you set it up in advance (shirts are bulky!), but pins and stickers go for everyone.
- Think about setting a very rough goal. What do you want to get out of it? Panels? Skating workshops? Attending fun themed scrimmages on Fremont or in the Sports Center? Open scrimmage? Drinking and socializing at the pool? Figure out what your tentative goal is, and when you get to Rollercon and check in, take a look at the schedule. Choose what your “must see” items are and choose what your “nice to see” items are. Make yourself a little schedule and that way you know what’s happening for the day, and you’ve already ranked them in order of importance.
- Give yourself realistic “socializing” and “resting” time. If that 10am panel on Saturday is something you HAVE to go to…maybe go easy on the adult beverages Friday night.
- Bring a least a small budget for gear and merch if you can! There will be amazing vendors that will have at least one trinket you can’t live without. Maybe that trinket is a cute little doll, maybe that trinket is a shirt, maybe that trinket is a new pair of custom skates.
Remember, Rollercon has something for EVERYONE, and just like life: you get out of it what you put into it. Have fun!
Gia de los Muertos
Now a Certified RollerCon Veteran
Co-Captain, Gramercy Refs Rollercon Challenge Team
Enforcer Training Team
Los Angeles Derby Dolls