The Rock Coast Rollers traded in their roller skates and helmets for a microphone and music as they strutted their musical talents April 13 at Billy's Tavern in Thomaston.

The Ballad of Milli Vanilli Lip Syncing Contest brought various sights and sounds to the stage, and provided great entertainment for participants and onlookers.

The evening saw eight performances, ranging from Kid Rock to Lady Gaga to Paul Simon and Billy Idol.

Awards were given to the top three crowd favorite performers, best solo, best duet, best moves, and most daring performers.

The event raised $705, with a portion of that going to the Cinderella Project of Maine. Based in Belfast, the Cinderella Project is an initiative of Waldo Community Action Partners. Its mission is to provide gently used prom dresses to area high school girls, in an effort to promote positive body image and increased self-esteem.

Known for their community involvement, the Rock Coast Rollers is a group of diverse women from all across the Midcoast.

"Derby used to be brutal, WWF style," said Zoe Foster (aka Roll Doll).

Then a group of women in Austin, Texas turned it into a legitimate sport. Instead of the angled track, the women skate on a flat track.

"There is no brawling, but it is a full contact sport," said Foster.

The Rockland-based Rock Coast Rollers are one of four leagues in Maine. The others are in Portland, Central Maine, and Bangor. They travel all over the northeast from New York to Canada. The sport now has 250 leagues worldwide.

"And it's becoming more and more main streamed," said Foster.

The team aims to be a skater-owned, not-for-profit business under Women's Flat Track Derby Association.

"In November 2011, 50 women showed up and formed a league together," said Foster.

At the helm of the organization was Heather Steeves who now lives in Portland, Ore. and skates for the Rose City Rollers.

Known as Derby Girls, the women come from all different walks of life: mothers, marketers, teachers, students. And of all ages from 18 to 50 years old.

"All the ladies are so supportive and inspirational," said Dana Crane (aka Crane Wreck). "They are all doing so many great things with their lives and they make time for derby too."

The team currently has 40 active skaters, and are constantly looking for "fresh meat" — a label given to new skaters until all tests of skill and endurance are passed.

The RCR season begins May 18 and they have five home bouts. The bouts are held at Midcoast Recreation Center on Route 90 in Rockport.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or by email at bbirmingham@courierpublicationllc.com.