A Home To Hang Our Skates

by Sassbot Engelbert

Supporting: Madison Roller Derby Venue Fund for Mad Rollin' Dolls, Inc.



If I've spoken to you at all in the last eight years, you probably know how much roller derby means to me.  

I found roller derby about a year after I graduated college, at a time of intense loneliness and depression. The world doesn't encourage adults to pursue hobbies and make social connections; after 4 intense years of spending time with peers and friends that college so strenuously encourages, I found myself adrift and unable to get excited about...pretty much anything. I didn't know what to do with myself other than go to work, come home, and make my life run smoothly. 

"Being a grown-up is terrible, and long, and most of it will be  boring," I thought to myself, almost constantly, and felt nothing but despair. 

Then I found roller derby. I found a community. Roller derby has taught me that I can be physically and emotionally strong - a lot stronger than I ever thought I could be. Roller derby taught me to put my money where my mouth is, to make goals and do the work to reach them, to participate fully in my city, and to connect with people who are very different from myself.  

Madison Roller Derby is about to lose our practice venue. We are working hard to raise funds to build or rent a new space for us to play in. It's a hard thing to ask more of the community that already pays money to watch your games, for your tshirts and buttons, and tells their friends to come too. Please consider donating whatever you have - pennies make dollars, and every bit will help us keep skating. And maybe we can help more people find their Wheels Family, their community, and their strength. We can keep skating and help others find joy in this crazy, weird thing that we do. 

Know that Madison Roller Derby is a non-profit organization, which not only means that your donations are tax-deductible, but that if we can keep on being a league, you are supporting our continuing mission of doing good in the community. We have supported hundreds of organizations, including G-Safe, Planned Parenthood, the Wisconsin Indian Education Association, the Humane Society, Open Doors for Refugees, the UW Health American Family Children's Hospital, and the Heartland Farm Sanctuary, to name just a very few. As a league, we are committed to not just giving money, but our time, energy, and support to organizations dedicated to bettering our community. 

I hate asking this. It's hard to ask people to give. Please think about it. If you don't want to give, or can't, perhaps you'd consider passing the message along to someone who might. Roller derby is an important part of the fabric that makes the community of Madison, and it is deeply important to me personally. 

Thanks for reading xx 

Thanks to all of your support, we have built a lasting legacy of roller derby in Madison.  Over the past 18 years, we moved from rope lights at Fast Forward Skate Center to hosting (and skating in!) WFTDA playoffs at Alliant Energy Center's Veterans Memorial Coliseum.  Unfortunately, our growth has stopped short  due to constraints on space and accessibility, and our current practice space is slated for demolition and redevelopment within the next 6 months.  We need your help to raise enough money to keep skating in a new space in Madison. 

With our own facility, we can bring our fans more roller derby games and events, relaunch a Junior training program, and support more local organizations. Most importantly, we can keep skating in Madison!  Win-win-win for everyone. 

Our success over the past 18 years has been based in grassroots growth -- and we will maintain this grassroots philosophy even in our fundraising.  To move forward, we need a minimum of $600,000 to secure commercial funding and secure a facility for the foreseeable future.  Additional needs include $150,000 to secure comfortable seating for our fans to watch our games.


We believe we can accomplish this through a combination of traditional single donations plus a sustaining donor system.  

  • If you can't give $100 to help us out today, can you sign up for $10/month, auto-deducted from your bank or a card?
  • If you can't donate $500, can you pledge $50/month instead?
  • If your business can't contribute $2,000 today, perhaps you can sign on for $200 per month instead

    Sustainable giving is a great way to help more, even if you can't give big donations right now, and we are a non-profit, so every dollar is fully tax deductible!  

No amount is too small (or too large!).  The key to our success will be a grassroots aggregate of regular, sustained giving as we finalize the plans and find a location.  Each donation is a rock of gravel that builds the foundation for a facility. 


Once we have secured a venue and it is self sustaining through events and ticket sales, your donations will then support a comprehensive, competitive Junior program, followed by a scholarship program.  Over time, additional donations will be directed toward improving our fan experience with things like better lighting and sound, and more events and activities.

With that, I would like to ask you to please sign on now to donate any amount you are able. Please invite your friends and family to do the same, and share our news as far and wide as you can.  We want everyone to feel empowered to support us, so feel free to choose a preset amount or enter $1 or whatever you can give in the box on the donate screen.  Every bit helps.

Thank you for your endless support and love!

Wendy Wilbur AKA. Allie Gator
Executive Director
Madison Roller Derby

About Us: 
As a local 501(c)(3) organization,  Madison’s premier roller derby league, and one of the founding leagues of the Women’s Flat Track Derby Assosication (WFTDA), MRD has paved the way for hundreds of other leagues across the country and around the globe. We’ve grown from four home teams to include two travel teams (Dairyland Dolls all-stars and Team Unicorn ). We hosted the 2016 WFTDA Playoffs, created a recreational roller derby team (Wreckers Madison Roller Derby), and all while maintaining our dedication to our community through countless hours of outreach with over a hundred local organizations.  


It is the mission of Mad Rollin’ Dolls, Inc. to provide a safe, inclusionary space to foster the development of a competitive women’s flat track roller derby athletic program, build leadership skills through volunteer opportunities, and make a positive impact in our community by serving as role models for our peers and future generations.

For more information on our capital campaign, please visit: 


How would you like to support?