Smithsonian’s ‘Hometown Teams’
Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group (CDG) in partnership with the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s Main Street Iowa program will celebrate the many roles athletics play in towns, cities, and states across the country when it brings “Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America,” to Mount Vernon from March 18 to April 29, 2018.
“Hometown Teams,” which will be complemented by exhibits featuring local legacies, examines how and why hometown sports are more than just games. They shape and unite us. From pick-up games to organized leagues, millions of Americans of all ages play sports. And, if we’re not playing sports, we’re sitting in the stands or gathered on the sidelines cheering as young athletes take their first swing or score their first goal. Let’s not forget, either, the tireless souvenir sales people and those slinging hamburgers and popcorn at concession stands.
A short video about the exhibition can be viewed online.
“Hometown Teams” as well as the local exhibits featuring memorabilia from Eastern Iowa communities will be on display at Mount Vernon’s First Street Community Center. The exhibit will be free.
“The Smithsonian has not been to Iowa with this program for years and their first journey back to Iowa will start in our little town,” said Joe Jennison, director of the Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group. “It’s going to be huge for Mount Vernon. We have been working for two years on this project and many of us had to keep it a secret for so long and now we get to share it with the world.”
The exhibit will be on view at the following times from March 18 to April 29, 2018:
- Wednesday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
- Thursday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
- Friday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
- Saturday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
- Sunday Noon – 4 p.m.
- A wall of sports‐related objects like Soccer Barbie, Air Jordan shoes, and Arnold Palmer tea will illustrate a look at how products use sports and athletes’ endorsements to hook buyers
- Using a stereoscope viewer, visitors will have a chance to view 10 famous American sports venues representing a diverse group of sports
- A tablet‐based interactive stocked with fight songs, videos of cheerleaders and marching bands, and photos of fun and unusual mascots from every state will introduce visitors to the excitement of athletic events
- Visitors will be able to see how football helmets, baseball gloves and soccer shoes have evolved
- A look at people and institutions that support local sports, and booster items from schools all over the country
- A “Name That Sport” interactive introduces visitors to six unique emerging sports, including SlamBall and underwater hockey
Complete Schedule of related Hometown Teams Events:
NOTE: More Than Just a Game: African American Athletes in Iowa originally scheduled for Sat. March 24, 10:30-11:30 a.m. has been cancelled due to anticipated bad weather. We are attempting to reschedule and will post information as soon as it becomes available.
- Mon. March 26, 1-3 p.m. – Movie “The Final Season”
- Wed. April 4, 7-8:30 p.m. – From the Pressbox: An Eastern Iowa Sports Media Panel
- Sat. April 7, 10-11:30 a.m. – How Iowa Met Baseball: The Myths, The History, The Players
- Sat., April 7, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Coach Jim Van Scoyoc meet and greet
- Sat. April 14, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. – “A Wrestling Life,” Talk and and Book Signing by Dan Gable
- Sat., April 14, 1-2:30 p.m. – Playing to Win: Kids and Sports
- Sat. April 21, 10-10:30 a.m. – Remembering 6-on-6 Gallery Talk
- Sat. April 21, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. – Collecting Girls’ and Women’s Sport Histories in Iowa
- Sun., April 22, Noon-4 p.m. – Collecting Girls’ and Women’s Sport Histories in Iowa
- Sun., April 22, 1-4 p.m. – The Return of Girls 6-on-6: Basketball Showcase
About Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group
The Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group (CDG), is an umbrella organization of which Main Street Mount Vernon is a large component. Five entities merged in 2008 to form CDG — the Chamber of Commerce, Marketing & Tourism Association, both Lisbon and Mount Vernon Economic Development Corporations, and Vision Mount Vernon. Their mission is to develop and promote businesses and enhance the quality of life in Mount Vernon and Lisbon.
About Main Street Iowa
The Main Street Iowa program works with a select group of communities committed to exceptionally high standards for downtown economic development. As a Main Street AmericaTMCoordinating Program, the more than 50 communities in Iowa are connected to a network of 40 programs across the country representing over 1,200 communities.