Derby was reborn in the early 2000s as a ferociously fun sport. Nearly all modern leagues are composed of female, DIY-spirited bands of punky costumed, vicious-monikered rascals who shove each other on traditional quad roller skates. The Rocky Mountain Rollergirls, Denver's original all-women flat-track roller derby league, is operated by the more than 40 skaters who makeup its six teams: home teams Red Ridin' Hoods, Sugar Kill Gang, Dooms Daisies, Kill Scouts, and traveling teams, Fight Club and the Contenders. These fearless athletes leave bouts with sprained shoulders, bruises, and hematomas, which is nothing compared to the competitors' pain (the ladies took home second place in the 2009 Women’s Flat Track Derby Association regional tournament and fourth in the national tournament).
Shoppers at the Southlands can take a break from gift buying by taking a turn on this icy outdoor skating rink. Families and friends can lace up rented hockey or figure skates, then take to the ice to enjoy the crisp, cold air as they practice spins and backward maneuvers or fine-tune impersonations of a baby deer learning to walk. The rink's opening also coincides with a visit from Santa, who parks his sleigh at Southlands Town Square on Tuesdays–Sundays, starting November 17.
The Denver Outlaws joined Major League Lacrosse as an expansion team in 2006, immediately staking out their territory with a Western Conference title and a trip to the league championship. In the years since, they have never once missed the playoffs, even when something good was on TV. From their inception, the Outlaws have marauded the league record books, setting attendance records in their inaugural season and improving from there, with recent Fourth of July games drawing more than 30,000 fans to Sports Authority Field at Mile High. This year’s Independence Day game continues the tradition of fireworks exploding over the field and a wave of apple pie filling flooding the parking lot.
Designed by adrenaline junkies specifically for Speed Raceway, each eco-friendly electric XLR8R kart can thrust racers at speeds nearing 50 mph through Speed Raceway's quarter-mile track. With 2 inches between you and the track below, the karts revolutionize the wind-resistant, frictional foundations of modern physics, proving once and for all that all physics is theoretical, especially gravity. Each 12-lap contest pits white-knuckled drivers against one another, and the entire field against a smug, unrelenting clock. Soon, licensed members can view an online database of their best times anytime, anywhere, and always in the presence of a disbelieving trackside crush.
Campus Cycles owners Mark Velat and Bobby Verenna grew up in the cycling world. Mark has been riding and racing for more than 30 years now, and Bobby broke into the retail end back in sixth grade. At their shop, patrons reap the rewards of their expertise when shopping from shelves of sturdy bikes and gear from brands such as Giant, Cannondale, and Electra, in addition to children's two-wheelers and tricycles. Their service department’s technicians recalibrate bikes with tune-ups, and fit specialists match individuals with the ideal cycle. Patrons can also visit on demo days when big-name manufacturers show off their latest products and let riders take them out for test-drives on nearby mountain trails or paved roads. Meanwhile, the store's Get to Know Your Bike classes give riders basic repair and maintenance skills so they can remedy minor damage incurred when tires pop on fiberglass banana peels littering the road.
Even though they haven't always played under the same name, or even in the same city, the Avalanche franchise has consistently enjoyed success on the ice. It was 1972 when the Quebec Nordiques joined the now defunct World Hockey Association, which eventually merged with the NHL prior to the 1979-80 season. The Nordiques played a total of 16 seasons in the NHL before moving to Denver, where they became the Avalanche and immediately won the Stanley Cup—the first NHL team ever to do so in their first season after relocation. In 2001, the Avs struck again in dominating fashion, collecting 118 points, reclaiming the sports world's best trophy. In total, the franchise has made 21 playoff appearances, highlighted by a string of 11 straight from 1994–2005.