The ladies of NoTown Roller Derby are having a battle for ultimate Fresno derby supremacy this weekend. Instead of playing a team from a different city, they’re splitting up all their skaters into three different squad and playing each other, tournament style, and calling it the FresYES Fest.
They’ve each adopted a temporary, Fresno-inspired moniker, making Saturday night’s bout — The Shaw Shankers, The Fulton Maulers and The Huntington Blvd. Harlots — a new kind of Fresno celebration.
We’re introducing you to one member of each team this week and getting the scoop on their squad and their favorite things about Fresno. We start with Kim Burly (#1337) — a well-known Fresno cheerleader from her 31 Days of Fresno blog — and a member of the Shaw Shankers.
How did your team come up with its name? It was down to a few options, but ultimately we all most strongly identified with making sharp weapons out of tooth brushes and other household items, so Shaw Shankers was chosen from the list of names submitted by our fans.
How is your team gonna show its Fresno pride this weekend? By winning. OH SNAP! Go Shankers!
Why are you guys gonna rule the other Fresno derby teams? We’re harnessing the combined power of Kopi and Alan Autry and using them as our spirit animals. Well, that and we have Pookie, who with her hips of fury won Best Assets last year. And of course Hari Kari gets it done faster than you can say “heartburn” after a tasty Philly cheese steak with lots of peppers at Al’s Cafe.
What’s your first Fresno-centric memory? Anything Summery. My earliest Fresno memories are all fireworks, peaches, concerts at Woodward Park and endless supplies of green grapes from my grandma’s vines.
One word to describe Fresno? Frestastic!
What’s one place you’re always sure to take your out-of-town guests? I work with foreign exchange students and the first activity I do with them is always Art Hop in Tower.
What’s one thing Fresno doesn’t have that you wish it did? At this very hot moment in time, I’m thinking I could really go for some beachfront property. So- big earthquake that will dump most of California into the ocean- feel free to stop right here.
What’s your favorite Fresno sports team, other than roller derby? Tough one. I’ve been to more Monsters games, but the Grizzlies are pretty exciting! Seriously, Buster Posey was just here and now he’s on FIRE with the Giants. How cool is it that we get to see that caliber of athletes first?
What’s your favorite Fresno-y place to eat? Cosmo Cosmo Cosmo Cosmo! Tomato Basil sandwich- Panini style. You’ll thank me later. And then buy me one.
Who’s your favorite Fresnan ever? The Fresnan — Mikey Seay.
Who is your favorite Fresno band? I like almost everything that comes from Deha Music. David Hull is really amazing and versatile.
What’s your favorite Fresno street? Van Ness is pretty great, from Christmas trees to thrift stores!
[photo: David C. Photography]