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Hometown Teams to Celebrate Sports

Delta Cultural Center - Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Delta Cultural Center’s upcoming exhibit, “Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America,” celebrates sports of all kinds and examines the many roles that sports play in American society. The exhibit opens at the DCC’s Visitors Center, 141 Cherry Street, on September 9 and runs through October 21.

An opening reception will be held at 6 p.m. on September 9, with Olympic medalist Kimberly Derrick in attendance. A native of Blytheville, Derrick is the only winter Olympic medalist from Arkansas, winning a bronze medal as part of the 3000 meter relay team in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, Canada.

This traveling exhibit was developed by the Museum on Main Street program, a partnership of the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibit Service and state humanities councils. It was created to serve museums, libraries and historical societies in rural areas, where one‐fifth of all Americans live. The partnership with the state humanities councils was formed as a creative response to the challenge faced by these rural museums to enhance their own cultural legacies. The Arkansas Humanities Council was responsible for identifying sites around the state to host the exhibit. The DCC is one of only six sites in Arkansas selected.

Venues were encouraged to supplement the exhibit with objects, stories and programs that celebrate local heritage and inspire community pride. “Hometown Teams” will feature artifacts that chronicle athletic culture in the Arkansas Delta region from its earliest Native American inhabitants through the present day. A portion of these artifacts consist of authentic mementos of local athletes who acquired national and international acclaim such as NBA star Scottie Pippen, winter Olympian Kimberly Derrick, and Coach Ken Hatfield, to name a few. Also, a plethora of artifacts and photographic images beginning in the late 1800s will demonstrate the different varieties of team sports played in the Delta from pee wee to the semi-professional level. This exposition of local sports compliments the broadly themed interactive Smithsonian exhibit.

“Hometown Teams” will capture the stories that unfold on the neighborhood fields and courts, our underdog heroics, larger‐than‐life legends, fierce rivalries, and gut‐wrenching defeats. For well over one hundred years sports have reflected the trials and triumphs of the American experience and helped shape the national character. Whether it’s professional sports, or those played on the collegiate or scholastic level, amateur sports or sports played by kids on the local playground, the plain fact is sports are everywhere in America.

For more information, interested persons can call the Delta Cultural Center at (870) 338-4350 or toll free at (800) 358-0972 or visit the DCC online at www.deltaculturalcenter.com.