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Get in the Mood to Skate!

“If you wonder where your child left his roller skates, try walking around the house in the dark.” – Leopold Fechtner

Celebrate the return of Saturday Skate Nights at the Thomas Jefferson Center!  From derbies and defying gravity to the Marx Brothers and murder, get ready to lace up and get rolling with these books and films:


Whip it (Derby Girl)
by Shauna Cross

Sixteen-year-old rebel Bliss Cavendar is miserable living in a small Texas town with her beauty pageant obsessed mother. When she secretly joins a roller derby team under the name “Babe Ruthless,” her life gets better – although infinitely more confusing.

Adapted into the equally fun 2012 movie, Whip It.


Wheels! Science Projects with Bicycles, Skateboards, and Skates
by Madeline Goodstein

How do bicycle gears work? How do you do an ollie on a skateboard? What’s the best way to get up after falling on your skates? Have fun learning about gravity, friction, the laws of motion, and more while enjoying a favorite sport.



The Big Store
DVD [1941]

The brothers reduce an enormous inventory of upscale merchandise into a multilevel disaster as they pursue and evade villains via bicycles, skates, unicycles, broad jumps, shipping chutes, elevator cables, high wires, pole vaults and pseudo-Tarzan chandelier swinging.




Roller Skates
by Ruth Sawyer; illustrated by Valenti Angelo

It’s the 1890s, and Lucinda’s family has traveled to Europe for the year, leaving her in the care of a guardian who understands that ten year old girls really need to roller-skate to school.  Over the year without her judgmental family, Lucinda gathers a surrogate family from the people she meets on her daily travels, composed of people who value her intelligence and don’t judge her tomboy tendencies. Winner of the 1937 Newbery Medal.


Skating Around the Law
by Joelle Charbonneau

Rebecca Robbins is a woman on a mission—to sell the roller rink she inherited from her mother and get back to Chicago. Fast. However, when she discovers the dead body of the town’s handyman headfirst in a rink toilet, potential buyers are scared off. Now Rebecca is stuck in a small town where her former neighbors think she doesn’t belong, living with her scarily frisky grandfather, Pop, and relying on a police department that’s better at gardening than solving crimes.


DVD [2011]

For Ritchie Wheeler, a carefree teenager growing up in a small Texas town, Skateland is more than just a local roller rink, it’s a fading symbol of friendship and good times. Now, everything’s changing and the only thing Ritchie can hang on to is his budding romance with the sweet and beautiful Michelle. But one fateful night will force Ritchie to face the future and make the most important decision of his life.


And don’t miss our historic photos of Arlingtonians roller skating, now searchable in the Library catalog!


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