By SHERRY DIGMON
News Staff Writer
To the observer, it may have looked like a free-for-all. But to those who know the rules of the game – of which there are few – it was a fierce competition with girls pitted against boys in a game of stickball. And this game is not for sissies.
Monday afternoon, a group of about 30 youth from Indiana were on the Poarch Creek Indian Reservation learning about Creek culture. They’re members of the Keystone Club, a service club, which spans two counties in Indiana. Sarah Heath is the club director.
Sarah, who has Native American blood on both sides of her family, chose PCI for the group’s trip this year for two reasons – exposure to a different part of the country and to teach the youth a little about Native American culture. She brought a different group of kids two years ago and had such a good experience, she decided to bring this year’s club.
PCI Boys and Girls Club Director Stephanie Agerton, PCI Teen Center Manager Melanie Hendrix, PCI Cultural Educator Joey Selzer and PCI Planning and Events Coordinator Chris “Ding Ding” Blackburn were more than happy to help the group experience a taste of Creek culture in the language, history, and the infamous stickball game.
Keystone is a service organization, and one way they served at Poarch was by picking vegetables and delivering them to the elders.
Among the PCI personnel assisting in teaching and playing stickball were Alex Alvarez, Blake Crook, Madelyn Boatwright, Ding Ding Blackburn, Caroline Bodiford.
About the rules. There is a little ball and a small target high up on a pole. Girls may use their hands to get the ball and hurl it toward the target. Guys can use sticks only to get the ball and fling it upward.
While trying to gain possession of the ball, anything goes – well, at least in this game for fun it did.
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News photos by Ditto Gorme