I have some fairly big news to share…
After three successful years running a brick and mortar roller skating lifestyle and culture boutique in the Village of Parkdale I have decided not to renew my lease which expires on Thursday, July 31.
Why? Well, I believe in signs... like Ace of Base once sang…(*ahem* anyways)...one of the big factors is that I have been able to provide affordable recreational and roller derby starter skates through a Canadian manufacturer. However, Dominion Skate Company is now closing its doors after almost 70 years. That means I would have to pull the majority of my quad-based stock from other sources which would mean my customers would start to see prices increase dramatically.
Certainly everyone knows the overheads are not low in the city of Toronto but having a physical location has served as an excellent incubator for my business. It sort of became a destination point for skaters of all kinds. It has also given me a scope on how much it would really take for me to focus my efforts on the regrowth of the Toronto roller skating scene. One of the things I recognised is the lack of knowledge, information, or awareness about the existing communities even amongst themselves. In order to bridge these gaps I feel that I need to make a shift in my business.
Folks would come into my store and be taken back in time, so many nostalgic memories and tales of times at local roller rinks. Other than consistently educating people about modern day flat track roller derby, many of my conversations focused on the inaccessibility to facilities that would be appropriate for roller skating.
I have been able to get people involved with roller derby and direct individuals to places where they CAN roller skate depending on their demographic. I've been so appreciative of the great feedback about my services or in hearing how meeting me has inspired someone to get on roller skates and give it a try.
Now it is time for change wherein I can make more time to travel and participate in roller derby bouts. Also give further attention to the roller skating association I founded known as the West End Waywards. Taking myself out of a fixed address will allow me to connect on a different level and enable me to dedicate more time to advocating the need for access to suitable facilities in the City of Toronto.
Am very excited about the changes I am making in ‘My Roll Life’. As I am a sole proprietor registered under that business name I have the freedom to evolve MY business model, because HEY that’s me! So instead of visiting me in Parkdale, you’ll be able to catch up with me online here, where I intend to blog the evolution of My Roll Life on the regular.
In the meantime, the shop will shift over to an online format and I will be posting my whereabouts for opportunities to get some deals in person while I downsize my current arrangement. I have a couple of twitter accounts, Facebook stuff, a newsletter mailing list that will be getting some love very soon and many other ways for y’all to stay connected with me as I roll in a different direction with My Roll Life.
Rolling forward and out!