Taste of Soul Sunday
A Team of Her Own: Minnie Forbes & Negro League Baseball
1:30 pm & 3:00 pm | Lower Level | Adult Computer Training Center
From 1956 to 1958, Minnie Forbes was owner of the Detroit Stars, the only Michigan team in Negro League baseball. The league offered many Black and Latino athletes the chance to play professional baseball in the first half of the 20th century. Minnie will share her story with Jaye Beeler, starting with her playing softball at fifteen for Cook’s Brown Dolls, a traveling team from Grand Rapids. She will also discuss playing baseball with the Kansas City Monarchs against the Grand Rapids Black Sox. In 1956, when Minnie took over her uncle Ted Rasberry’s team, the Detroit Stars, the Negro League was winding down. Along the way from player to owner, she interacted with renown players like Satchel Page and Ozzie Guillen. In 2013 she was honored by President Obama for her contribution to athletics and civil rights.
The Spirit of South High School
2:15 pm & 3:30 pm | Lower Level | Quiet Study Room
South High School has a unique local mythology in the Grand Rapids community. Though it officially closed its doors in 1967, the spirit of South High School can be seen everywhere–from the building that still stands to our nation’s capital. At the heart of this spirit are the students who continue to claim allegiance to the South High Trojans. Join former South High students Talib El Amin, Anita Christopher, Deborah Jones and Stephen R. Drew, as they reminisce about their school, their lives, and how we can continue to honor South’s spirit in our community.
From Jackie Robinson to Kaepernick: A Brief History of Athlete Activism
2:15 pm & 3:30 pm | Level 4 | Vander Veen Center for the Book
Anyone paying attention to sports lately knows this to be true: the Black athlete is woke. What started with a 2012 photo of the Miami Heat wearing hoodies to urge justice for Trayvon Martin has become a full movement of Black athletes publicly protesting injustice. From WNBA players wearing Black Live Matter shirts to Colin Kaepernick taking a knee, Black athletes have once again refused to “shut up and play.” Today’s activist athletes are part of a long movement of Black athletes using their platforms to create change in society. Dr. Louis Moore will explore the history of Black athlete activism, including Jackie Robinson, Muhammad Ali, and Bill Russell, and tie them to the Civil Rights Movement and present day athletes fighting for racial justice.