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Smithsonian “Hometown Teams” now open in Omaha

The sports-themed exhibit, “Hometown Teams” is scheduled to open at El Museo Latino, 25th & L Street in South Omaha, on Monday June 2. This traveling exhibit is presented by Humanities Nebraska in partnership with the Smithsonian Institution through the “Museum on Main Street” program. The museum hours are Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday from 1 to 5 p.m., and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“Hometown Teams” explores the origins of popular community sports in America and their evolution to today, the rise and significance of company-owned teams and leagues, and the role of sports in the civil rights struggles by minorities and women. It will remain at El Museo Latino through July 5.

A community conversation about how sports help build and define community identity will be held at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 11 at El Alamo Mexican Restaurant, 4917 S. 24th Street, Omaha. Hosted by Humanities Nebraska, the program, “More Than Just a Ballgame: Sports, Race and Community” is free and open to the public. The discussion will be led by Charles Klinetobe, who primarily studies race, sport and community. He teaches history at the University of Nebraska and at Metropolitan Community College in Omaha.

The Hometown Teams exhibit was met with positive community reactions in both Nebraska City and Wahoo earlier in 2014. In mid-July, it will travel to Saint Paul. Tilden, Alliance and Lexington will also host the exhibit by turns through the end of the year.

Museum on Main Street exhibitions focus on our national history and culture. Working with Humanities Nebraska, small museums, libraries and other hometown organizations develop special events and programming around these traveling exhibitions.

By combining resources, Museum on Main Street, a partnership between the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service and state humanities councils nationwide, brings quality cultural programs to underserved citizens and sparks new opportunities for small cultural organizations.

Museum on Main Street is a program that serves the small-town museums and citizens of rural America. Humanities Nebraska is a private, statewide, non-profit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. “Hometown Teams” was brought to Nebraska with funding support from the Carmen and John Gottschalk Foundation, Brown Transfer Company, Nebraska Rural Radio Network (KRVN, KTIC and KNEB), Nebraska Cultural Endowment, the State of Nebraska and other generous donors.

For more information or to become a sponsor, contact Mary Yager, associate director, at (402) 474-2131.

Humanities Nebraska programming is made possible by:

and generous individuals, foundations, and businesses across Nebraska.