‘Freedom and acceptance’: Portland’s Secret Roller Disco

Published: Sep. 29, 2022 at 7:43 AM PDT
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PORTLAND Ore. (KPTV) -It’s a funky, fun and free event in Portland. The Secret Roller Disco started as a whim during the pandemic, but this retro hobby is growing into a Portland movement.

It all started as sort of an underground skate meet-up during the pandemic with a few friends in a garage, but now, hundreds of Portlanders dress in their best and meet up to roll in the Rose City every Thursday night.

Every Thursday night you’ll find hundreds of Portlanders spinning and gliding on a make-shift roller rink somewhere in the city. It might be a parking lot or an empty warehouse.

“We started in a parking garage. We had some friends come, then IG found out. Now we have 11 thousand followers,” said April Hasson, the co-founder. She met her Co-founder Francesco in roller derby about 17 years ago. The duo call themselves the accidental co-founders of Secret Roller Disco.

“We really want people to come and enjoy skating. We love Portland and we love to bring joy to different places,” said Francesca.

The duo said obtaining permits and finding places to roll is a big challenge. They also bring a in a roller-skate rental truck, photo booths, food vendors and a DJ.

“We’ve invested a lot of blood sweat and tears and money in this free event,” said Francesca

To find this weekly secret location and theme, and if skate rentals will be available that night, check out their Secret Roller Derby’s website and Instagram. They roll every Thursday night from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.