Stickball is the older, rougher cousin of lacrosse, developed many centuries ago as both a game and a training exercise. The U.S. government once deemed stickball one of the cultural connections they needed to eliminate in the effort to assimilate Native children through missionary-run boarding schools. The game survived that assault and keeps gaining momentum, played by local clubs and in competitive national tournaments. Today on Native America Calling, Shawn Spruce learns about the origins and growing future for the nation’s oldest team sport with Mike Slee (Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians), stickball player for the Walelu Cherokee Indian Ball team and the director of operations for the Museum of the Cherokee Indian; Miranda Long Stamper (Creek and a citizen of the Eastern Band of Cherokee), teacher, coach and stickball player; announcer and player Jeremy Bell (Mississippi Band of Choctaw member); Dr. Scott Ketchum (Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma), Chickasaw Nation endowed chair in Native American Studies for East Central University; and Casey Bigpond (Mississippi Band of Choctaw member), cultural revitalization specialist for the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians.
Break 1 music: Stick Game Jam (song) Inez F. BIG Phil (Beat by Magic Touch, Mixed by EV Of A-Slam.Com) (artist) Singsoulgirl (album)
Break 2 music: Sahkaweyohk Ota (Give A War Cry Here) (song) Young Spirit (artist) Akameyimoh Baby Boy (album)