Your neighbor since: 2011
IN HER OWN WORDS: “I have the best neighbors in the world, I love my neighbors. My next door neighbor is how I got involved in derby!” — Allicia Gould
As she skates the Stardust skate-rink in her leopard-print duct-tape-covered skates, Allicia Gould can’t help but smile.
“My husband has a picture of me skating with a huge grin on my face — he says I look like I’m 8 years old,” Gould says, blushing.
The mother of four is a member of the Sarasota roller derby team the Rolling Renegades, and in June was voted MVP Blocker (a defensive position) at the team’s last home bout.
Gould, who is known by her teammates as “Rockabilly Red,” has been a derby girl for two years.
“There’s nothing like it,” she says gliding effortless on the rink in her blue and black team uniform.
The curly haired redhead is an early college coordinator at the State College of Florida; however, it’s her pastime of skating in roller derby she says that makes her day.
“It is the most wonderful thing I’ve ever done,” she says.
In 2012, the Rolling Renegades, formerly known as the Suncoast Quad Squad, started a junior team, the Rolling Rebels. The Renegades wanted to share the fun and excitement of their pastime with children and young adults.
Gould says roller derby has brought her family even closer together; her daughter Anna, derby name “A.Sassin,” skates for the Rebels.
The fun she has with her daughter reminds Gould of the times she spent with her mother. One of the reasons Gould began roller derby was because she grew up skating with her mother.
“I wanted to do something [Anna] and I could enjoy together, mother-daughter bonding time,” she says. “One of the best things I ever did with my mom was to go skating.”
After her neighbor mentioned a family member skated, Gould tried out for the team. Even though she had never played nor had she skated in years, Gould was welcomed by her encouraging teammates.
The Rolling Renegades and Rolling Rebels not only support each other but also the community. The team gives back to local nonprofits, such as Face Autism, and holds garage sales and fundraisers several times a year.
“We want to have a stronger presence in the community,” says Gould. “We want Sarasota to know that we are there for Sarasota.”
Gould thinks her teammates and their support, both on and off the rink, is what she loves most about roller derby.
“I really enjoy being a roller derby girl,” she says. “My favorite part is what it’s done as far as self esteem and knowing that I can.”
— Harriet Sokmensuer
Join the Neighborhood! Our 100% local content helps strengthen our communities by delivering news and information that is relevant to our readers. Support independent local journalism by joining the Observer's new membership program — The Newsies — a group of like-minded community citizens, like you. Be a Newsie.