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(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America
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Kanata:kon School Students Take On The Akwesasne Mohawk Police In A Kickball Game
by Karonhiaton
Kanata:kon School students and the AMPS members

It's nearly 10 am in the morning at Kanata:kon School. A man walks through the main school entrance and out to the backdoor of the school to the ball field. He is wearing sneakers and is dressed in all black with a t-shirt that has 'POLICE' written on the back.

This officer meets up with other Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service (AMPS) members who are gathered out back at the ball field. Their police vehicles line Second Street in Kanata:kon. They've never competed as a kickball team before, but they are looking to dominate the field today.

At the ball field, along the wire fences sit student spectators from Pre-K, K and grades 1 and 2. With noise makers shaped like slices of watermelon and colorful metallic pompoms in hand these students are here to cheer on their fellow school mates. Although a bit chilly and cloudy, passion and excitement fill the air as Team Kanata:kon makes their way onto the field, running through a decorative banner.

Last year, Kanata:kon School students competed in a kickball game against their parents. This year Missy King, computer/art/ gym teacher, decided to coordinate with the AMPS to host a kickball game, a first-of-its-kind. During the school year Missy King organized many different field trips and activities for her students. Most recently, grades 3, 4 and 5 were rewarded with a hiking trip to Azure Mountain. Hopefully, Kanata:kon School will continue to offer similar events and activities for their students in the years to come.

Student spectators chanted, "Han:io Skawatsira," on the sideline and teachers cheered, yelling at the top of their lungs.

An AMPS team member manning home plate whispered to a student as he made his way up to kick. He was trying to outwit and trick the student of the opposing team. An on-looking teacher caught sight of this and loudly shouted, "Tohsa entsiatahonsatat."

The game intensified when Team AMPS challenged students to aim and hit a parked police vehicle positioned behind second base. If Team Kanata:kon could hit the vehicle they would gain an instant 5 run advantage over Team AMPS, putting them ahead in the game.

In the days leading up to the big game many details were not settled, but by Wednesday morning everything seemed to be going according to plan. Initially, nine AMPS officers arrived at 10 am for the start of the game. Additional officers and AMPS trainees soon showed up to challenge the Kanata:kon School students. Team AMPS members included Ranatiiostha Swamp, Kariwate Mitchell, Raweras Mitchell, Jeremy Reddick, Jim Ritchie, Nathan Thompson, Justin Delormier, Vaughan Starblanket, Eddie Thompson, Jim Sunday, Mac Mitchell, Rob White, Leroy Swamp, Wallace Thompson, LeeAnn O'Brien, Rachel Thomas, Aronienens Porter, Corey Thomas, Brandon Swamp and Norman King Jr.

Rahhesere attempts to tag AMPS player Jim Ritchie

Team AMPS put up an impressive fight, but Kanata:kon team took the win on Wednesday June 8, 2016. The rules were changed up a bit to favor Team Kanata:kon, rather than sticking to the normal three outs students were given the advantage of five outs allowing the team to gain additional scoring opportunities. This led to a rally of runs for Team Kanata:kon putting them ahead of Team AMPS. Mostly every game participant touch home plate scoring for their respective teams.

After an hour of entertaining competition the two teams came together to take photos. Team AMPS received an honorary poster signed by the participating students in grades 4, 5 and 6. The brightly decorated poster read, 'Nia:wen kowa for taking the time to play kickball with our classes.'

Team AMPS was then invited to eat lunch by Team Kanata:kon as an expression of their appreciation. At the BBQ luncheon Team AMPS members took time to interact with the students one on one. As the event concluded everyone seemed to have an enjoyable time watching and playing the childhood game of kickball.

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