Haz Skates, Will Travel

Frustrated with my own indecisiveness in the face of unlimited online skate & gear suppliers, I took a road trip to a little skate shop about 3 1/2 hrs away yesterday to stock up. Yes, it took a whole tank of gas, but being able to try things on made it (and the lost time) worth it.

The shop is tiny, set in a strip mall near the rink, on the edge of Bloomington, IN, but it’s well-stocked for derby girls. In fact, the guy who helped me said they’re absolutely gobsmacked by the resurgence in derby, which has been responsible for keeping their shop open over the last couple of years. With leagues now in Indianapolis, Bloomington, Lafayette, Ft. Wayne, Columbus (IN), and girls occasionally coming from as far away as Champaign (I wasn’t the first), they have a steady stream of business both for purchase and repairs.

My loot:
Riedell R3 skates with Radar Cayman wheels & ABEC-5 bearings
Extra set of wheels & bearings for outdoor skating: purple Radar Zen (85A) w/ ABEC-5 bearings
Triple-8 knee pads
187 elbow pads
Triple-8 wrist protectors
Plus a set of purple & grey skull laces 🙂


All for just over $200! I’m grateful for not having been talked up to the Vixen skate, even though I had my eye on it. If I’m still doing this next spring, I can always move up – but the R3s are perfectly good recreational skates, and didn’t break the bank.

CAN. NOT. WAIT. to get these outside!!

  1. ACK! It’s Rolling Thunder Fun Factory. I think some misguided sense of wanting to maintain anonymity kept me from posting that at first, but I want to give them props!!! Go see them if you’re within a day’s drive and in need of a freshie package… you won’t regret it.

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