By Lucinda Bradford
March 16, 2014
Charleston, WV — The West Virginia Humanities Council is sponsoring a state tour of the new Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibit, Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America. West Virginia is a debut state for the exhibit that will be on display at the Larry Joe Harless Community Center in Gilbert from March 24 through May 3. The official exhibit opening will be held on March 25 at 5:30 p.m. with a “Tailgate Reception” at the center. Volunteer coaches for the center’s basketball league will be honored at the opening followed by a youth league basketball game in the center’s gymnasium.
Hometown Teams interweaves images and text with almost 70 artifacts, video, audio and other interactive elements that present perspectives on sports in popular culture, as well as local sports traditions. It offers information about mascots, marching bands, cheerleaders, game day traditions, tailgating, player/coach relationships, sports equipment, stadiums, rivalries, and athletes who broke racial, gender or physical barriers in sports. The growth of alternative and extreme sports also is explored.
The Humanities Council is providing funding and technical assistance to each host site for the development of companion displays and supplemental programs that celebrate their local sports heritage. For information on local displays and programs at the Larry Joe Harless Community Center contact the center at 304-664-2500 or visit www.ljhcc.org.
Hometown Teams is made possible through the Museum on Main Street (MOMS) program, a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and state humanities councils nationwide. Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress.
The remaining Hometown Teams schedule for West Virginia is:
Larry Joe Harless Community Center, Gilbert March 24 – May 3
Preston County Sports Museum, Rowlesburg May 11 – June 21
Randolph County Community Arts Center, Elkins June 29 – August 9
Weirton Area Museum & Cultural Center, Weirton August 17 – September 27
Morgantown History Museum, Morgantown October 5 – November 15