Saturday, August 27, 2016

limestone country - just off indiana's historic pathway

Out of Brownstown, down the road to Vallonia, then headed west again to Limestone Country.  Flags, patriotic nets and boys with basketballs (that's young Justin Greene across the alley from the old Vallonia Gym & future Brownstown Central freshman Braden Fields leaning against his barn).  Just another Indiana summer day.  CGS.  

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

limestone country - brownstown, the right road

Eleven miles west of Seymour, up a rise in the rolling countryside, sits the small city of Brownstown, home of the Brownstown Central Braves.  Although it's the site of another great southern Indiana sunken gym (one we will visit this coming season) our intent was to hustle west to the limestone country of Bedford & Bloomington.  But that was before we were directed to the Brownstown Central Middle School and met Principal Doug McClure.  Doug, like a proud parent, shared with us what is hidden & protected within the walls of his school - the old high school gymnasium.  And by 'within' I  mean the whole gym, outside walls & all, lives inside the Middle School.  An unusual architectural solution to preserving history, complete with a nod to the WPA and the builders who came before.  Thank you Brownstown for going down this path, one that other communities throughout the Hoosier state should follow.  CGS. 

Saturday, August 20, 2016

us 52, farm for sale

Empty house, empty barn.  But the saddest thing - an empty court & hoop.  CGS.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

limestone country - on the road

Our second big road trip of the summer took us west to Limestone Country, to the gyms nestled in the rolling hills between Bedford & Bloomington.  In the next several weeks we'll share our stories from Shawswick, Heltonville, Smithville, Springville, Unionville, Stinesville and Oolitic.  We'll also introduce you to a Hall of Fame coach, a concerned citizen who bought his own gym and the player who might be the real inspiration for Jimmy Chitwood (with apologies to Bobby Plump).  For now meet Braden Fields, a soon to be Brownstone Central freshman, who put aside his breakfast to shoot some baskets for our cameras.  A true Hoosier sight if there ever was one.  CGS.  

Monday, August 1, 2016

upstate, the forgotten ones

When their playing days are over boys & girls long past youth still have lives to live.  Some of those lives will be long and prosperous; while others short & sometimes tragic.  The gyms where they played are much the same.  On our trip 'upstate' we found magic in the reunion of the '66 Elston team on their home court, hope in a young player in LaCrosse and energy within the solid arena at Whiting.  We saw preservation & a sense of history in Michigantown, hard work still being done in the confines of Union Mills and pride in Morgan Township's Cherokee Country.  But we also found ruin & loss in Millcreek and Medaryville - gyms whose stories are nearing the end.  This trip to the north country expanded our view of Indiana's basketball heritage and also strengthened our belief that preserving this history, whether physically or photographically, is of utmost importance.  CGS.