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Buffalo RiverWorks to bring roller derby to the waterfront

Buffalo RiverWorks

Buffalo RiverWorks announced Tuesday that its new entertainment and event center will be home to an amateur roller derby league. The Queen City Roller Girls will be housed inside Buffalo RiverWorks, the site of the Labatt Blue Pond Hockey Tournament this past February.

The 98’ x 66’ indoor flat track is part of the Buffalo RiverWorks eight acre multi-use facility that once

completed will include several bars, restaurants and on-site brewery inside a former grain elevator. Outside of the venue will include two seasonal ice rinks, beach beer garden, volleyball courts, and waterfront docks for recreational boaters.

The Queen City Roller Girls are expected to attract more than 5,000 fans to downtown Buffalo for roller derby games. Partner in development of Buffalo RiverWorks Doug Swift says he believes the league will help the entertainment and event center become another major regional attraction along Buffalo’s waterfront.

“This is going to be a premier venue to watch amateur sports at their best. The Queen City Roller Girls will bring something new to the city of Buffalo. This isn’t your mother’s roller derby. People can expect to see some of the best female athletes in western New York compete in a venue that offers an overall experience with entertainment and locally-brewed beer,” said Swift.

Credit Buffalo RiverWorks
Rendering of the Buffalo RiverWorks entertainment and event center.

Queen City Roller Girls Chairperson Jason Isla says the track was created with help from local roller derby athletes and it will be the first of its kind in the nation.

Credit Ashley Hirtzel
Queen City Roller Girls league taking part in a mock practice.

“This expands our footprint in western New York and it also allows us to be a part of the revitalization of Buffalo, which is a big deal. For our fans it means that we’re going to have a first class entertainment venue centrally located on the waterfront with expanded capacity, improved sight line to the track, ample parking and first class concessions. We’re just absolutely thrilled to be a part of the first in kind entertainment complex that’s actually being built out with roller derby in mind,” said Isla.

Buffalo RiverWorks is expected to open by the end of this fall. The Queen City Roller Girls will begin playing at the complex in January 2015. The leagues current home at Rainbow Rink in North Tonawanda will still be utilized for practices and derby related training sessions.