In the olden days, racetracks employed ladies on roller skates to deliver axle grease to steam-powered racecars so that they could maintain their blistering pace of 9 miles per hour. When a scuffle between two such ladies proved more entertaining than the race itself, roller derby was born. Today’s Groupon gets the Twin Cities its daily recommended dosage of kinetic estrogen. For $6, you get a general-admission ticket (a $12 value on the day of the game) to see the North Star Roller Girls battle it out in a flat-track roller-derby bout. During the Wild Wild Midwest double-header on Saturday, March 20, at 7:30 p.m., the Banger Sisters take on Delta Delta Di, while the Violent Femmes face off against the Kilmore Girls. This will be the final grudge match before the championship bout on April 10. Customers may purchase up to four Groupons. General admission tickets are good for chair and bleacher seating or standing, but not trackside seating.
After clinching their division in the 2011 season, the Minnesota Dragons return to the gridiron for another eight-game campaign in the semipro Northern Elite Football League. Among the season’s four home games, the energized roster squares off against fellow Minnesotans—and 2011 champs—the St. Paul Pioneers in a battle to determine who will lay claim to the Twin Cities and who will have to play the rest of their games at the bottom of Lake Superior. As players unsheathe their biggest plays to slay their opponents, the Dragons’ dance team spurs the players on inside the venerated Metrodome, home to the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings.
If you’re looking to have some old-school roller-skating fun, the Minnesota Roller Girls is the way to go. Roller Derby is the name of the game at the Roller Girls dome, an exciting sport that pits teams of roller skaters against one another as they try to out-skate each other around a circular track. The charm here is how the rules are very easy to initially grasp, but require deeper study to understand the nuances of the teamwork and strategy needed for a win. The Roller Girls were one of the first members of the Women’s League of this sport, joining in 2006. In addition to the intense, nonconventional contact sport that’s played here, spectators can also enjoy the in-house band intermission performances, which are lively and fun to listen to.
With only three home-turf games remaining in the season, cheer on the Twin Cities' fearsome squad of sassy ladies as they run, pass, tackle, kick, shimmy, teleport, twirl, and crank call their way across the gridiron. But don't expect any shortened fields, wussy tear-away flags, or altered rules just because the players have little use for a cup—this is straight-up football, right down to the earth-shaking QB sacks, high-flying Hail Marys, and tackles that pack their own crater. This hard-hitting action, coupled with intricate strategic plays, provides more entertainment than a shaky washing-machine race through a corn maze. Additionally, on May 8, Burnsville High School will host a BirdieBall golf tournament prior to the Vixen game (not included with the Groupon), which will feature par 3 holes, field goal drives, various prizes, and an opportunity to pair football with the most brutally unforgiving of sports.
Keeping folks busy year-round is the main mission at Monticello Community Center, whether viewing movies in the park or splashing around the indoor pool and water slides. Allowing families to stay active, the fitness center welcomes visitors 16 and over to use free-weights, cardio equipment, and mirrors for flexing. Adult sports leagues organize teams for hockey and softball, while more low-key green thumbs can head to the community garden to dig in the dirt, plant, and tend to buds.
National Sports Center is one of the few places in the world where you can step from verdant fields onto stretches of ice. Eight ice arenas?four Olympic-sized, four NHL-sized?comprise more than 148,000 square feet inside the Schwan Super Rink. And as for the fields? The National Sports Center was originally conceived as a soccer complex, and it still boasts 52 fields. The Guinness Book of World Records has certified National Sports Center as the largest soccer complex on earth.
Hockey and soccer still only make up a small portion of the sports that are playable at the center. Those same soccer fields might host rugby on one day, lacrosse on another, and ultimate disc the following week, provided the discs have not flown south for the winter. The ice rink might host figure skaters as well as broomball teams. At the center's outdoor cycling velodrome, brake-free bikes race each other along a canted track, thrilling crowds every Thursday from late May to September. And of course, there's the Victory Links Golf Course, a 400-acre expanse that's home to an 18-hole championship course, a grass driving range, and an 18-hole bent-grass putting course. Players of all stripes can sign up for leagues and lessons in their favorite sport, or check out everything from expos to fitness classes on the calendar of events.