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Wednesday, July 28, 2021
Home Sports Rogers Stadium Physical Culture Sports Club launches a sports oral history initiative

Rogers Stadium Physical Culture Sports Club launches a sports oral history initiative

VISTA DEL MAR, LADYVILLE, Belize District, Sat. June 26, 2021– This evening, on the open garden exterior of the Rustic Restaurant adjacent to the marina in Vista Del Mar, a small group of sports men and women came together to embark on an interesting project – utilizing the modern technology of video recording to document the oral history recollections of a few individuals who were instrumental in the birth, growth and development of what became known as the Rogers Stadium Sports Club and later the Rogers Stadium Physical Culture Sports Club (RSPCSC). The club has stood the test of time, with some loyal members now in the diaspora having organized themselves to make meaningful contributions to the organization that once gave them an outlet, a sporting home, and some direction at a critical time in their young lives while growing up in Belize City in the seventies, eighties, nineties, and onwards.

Club executive member George Myvett acted as host/moderator for the occasion, and he explained that, while he leads a group that has prepared a 5-year strategic plan for the club, they felt it was important at this time, before the elders begin passing on, to use the oral history method for documenting the past origins and development of the club, as recalled by those elders who were there and instrumental in the process. A few of the veteran club members/founders were interviewed, giving their various perspectives and memories of the early days of the club, and it is expected that other events will be held in the future to continue the documenting process with other individuals. Interviewed in this first session were Rogers Stadium stalwart and active club executive, Jacob “Psychi” Westby; former Cross Country Champion and the chief early leader and organizer of the club, Kenneth “Powder” Sutherland; legendary softball super-stars, Brenda Johnson and Patricia “Pat” Bennett; and Charger football legend, as well as a male softball and coaching icon, Leslie “Tucumcari” Rogers.

(l to r) Brenda Johnson and Pat Bennett

Moderator George Myvett confessed after the sessions that it was a first venture, and there was no pre-organized choreography involved, so that there were a couple unexpected barbs from diehard Stadium friends, as when Psychi recalled young Rogers as “a very dirty player” in football and basketball, and when Rogers got his turn to respond, recalled that Psychi was not good enough on the field, and not much better in goal, thus his, Rogers’ heroic efforts to avoid opponents having to face Psychi. Rogers, at five foot three or four, insisted he would run rings around the six foot four Psychi on the basketball court, which always rankled the taller player. The jousting between those two is apparently nothing new, as they could be seen afterwards sharing jokes with Powder, while Myvett was preparing to interview Ms. Johnson.

Aside from the little entertainment distractions, there was a lot of history captured in the session; and the RSPCSC management intends to prepare it for circulation sometime soon on social media. As Myvett explained in his introduction to the around ten people in attendance, utilizing this method of oral history is important in these modern times, because many of the younger generation don’t read newspapers or books much anymore, but are regulars on social media. Thus, the video recorded sessions can be shared on Facebook, You-Tube, WhatsApp, etc.

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