Events continue with programs on women in baseball, professional football in Rock Island, stadium tours, and Quad City golf
Rock Island, IL: Hometown Teams, a touring exhibit on how sports affects American culture, kicked off this morning at the Rock Island Main Library with an opening day ceremony involving 150 participants, including athletes from Rock Island, Moline, and United Township High Schools, the Moline High School marching band, members of the Rock Island High School varsity cheerleading squad, local committee members and program partners.
The traveling Hometown Teams exhibit, which is a collaboration of the Smithsonian Museum on Main Street and the Illinois Humanities Council, is supported by local sports history displays and programs at the Rock Island Main Library and other community sites.. The first program in the six-week program series is Tuesday. It features the history of local auto racing. "Start Your Engines: Motorsports in the Quad Cities," will be presented by racing writer and organizer Roger Ruthhart at 2:30 pm on Tuesday, Sept. 16, in the Rock Island Main Library Community Room, 401 19th Street. The free program covers the rich history of auto racing in the Quad Cities, including what many believe to be the site of the first automobile race in Iowa.
Additional free history programs in September include:
Women Who Played Baseball: Monday, Sept. 22, at 6:30 pm, Rock Island Main Library, 401 19th Street, Rock Island. Illinois Humanities Council road scholar Barbara Gregovich presents the story of three teenage girls who played hardball on the last traveling "bloomer girl" baseball team in 1934. For 60 years prior to the formation of the All American Girls Professional League, women played in these national and international barnstorming leagues. This human-interest story touches on the Great Depression, barnstorming baseball teams, and the heroic women who wanted to play hardball.
Small Stadium, Big Time Football; RI Independents of the NFL: Thursday, Sept. 25:, 6:30 pm, Rock Island Main Library, 401 19th Street. Retired Rock Island High School coach Vic Boblett brings us the story of the Rock Island Independents, one of the first 14 teams of the National Football League. The Independents are prominently featured in the library's local display. Boblett will expand upon their role in local and national football history, and on the differences in football, then and now.
Places Where We Play Stadium Bus Tour: Saturday, Sept. 27, from 9:30 am to noon. Tour embarks and returns to Rock Island Main Library. The stadiums where we watch and play for Hometown Teams are sources of great memories and community spirit. Learn more about the history of Rock Island High School's Almquist Field, Moline High School's Wharton Field House and Browning Field, and Augustana College's Ericson Field. Each stop includes a presentation, with additional bus commentary by Thom Cornelis. Reservations needed for bus arrangements. Please call 309-732-7345 or register via the library's online calendar. Reservations requested no later than Wednesday, Sept. 24. The tour is free and open to all ages. Children must be accompanied by an adult.
From the Quad Cities Open to the John Deere Classic - Big-time Professional Golf in the Quad Cities, Tuesday, Sept. 30: 6:30 pm, Moline Public Library, 3210 41st Street. Hometown Teams local project partner Moline Library hosts a golf exhibit and program by longtime tournament volunteer John Wetzel.
October programs include an Oct. 4 program on a local game changer in integrating professional football, Frederick "Duke" Slater, along with presentations on Three-I League baseball, Tri-Cities Blackhawks professional basketball, amateur softball tournaments at Douglas Park, and a panel discussion on how Title 9 changed sports nationally and locally.
Additional Hometown Team displays are offered at Rock Island County Historical Society, and the Karpeles Manuscript Museum. Evenings at Butterworth, at the Butterworth Center, Moline, has also dedicated three fall programs to sports topics.
"Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America, will be on view during library hours from Saturday, Sept. 13 to Saturday, Oct. 25, 2014 at the Rock Island Library's Main Branch, 401 19th Street, Rock Island. “Hometown Teams: How Sports Shape America” is part of Museum on Main Street, a unique collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service and the Illinois Humanities Council.
Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress. Local sponsors include the Rock Island Community Foundation, Illinois Humanities Council, Modern Woodmen of America, Rock Island Public Library Foundation, and Sedona Staffing, along with media sponsorships from WHBF TV/CBS 4, Townsquare Media (ESPN Quad Cities 93.5, The HAWK 104.9, 97X WXLP, and B100 ), Mickle Communications, The Dispatch/Rock Island Argus and the River Cities Reader. In kind support has been received from Bill's Moving and Storage, Victory Enterprises, and Midwest Graphics Management.
All events are free and open to the public. Free Hometown Teams program brochures are available, or contact the library at 309-732-READ or www.rockislandlibrary.org for more details.
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Exhibit Venue: Rock Island Main Library: 401 19th Street, Rock Island, IL 61201, 309-732-READ (7323),www.rockislandlibrary.org. Second- floor exhibit space open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm daily, during all scheduled library programs, and by contacting the first floor service desk at other times. Exhibits close one-half hour before library closing. Group tours are available. General library hours of operation are Monday-Thursday, 9:00 am to 8:00 pm, Friday and Saturday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. The library is closed on Sundays.