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Sporting KC, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum Commemorate Juneteenth

June 18, 2021 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Sporting Kansas City News Release


Sporting Kansas City and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum have partnered to commemorate Juneteenth and celebrate the 101st anniversary of the Negro leagues by launching a limited-edition capsule collection for supporters.

The vintage capsule collection combines the nostalgic look of the Negro leagues with Sporting's classic soccer threads and features a T-shirt, a match scarf and two different hats. The collaboration honors Juneteenth-a national federal holiday observed on June 19 that celebrates the emancipation of enslaved people in the United States-while also paying homage to the rich history of Negro leagues baseball, which began in 1920 and paved the way for African American athletes of future generations.

The capsule collection will be available beginning Wednesday while supplies last at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum Extra Innings Gift Shop, NLBM.com and at all SportingStyle locations inside Children's Mercy Park when Sporting Kansas City hosts the Colorado Rapids at 7:30 p.m. CT (tickets). Pre-orders for the new merchandise are now open at SportingStyle.com with pickup taking place on the Mazuma Plaza beginning at 6 p.m. CT on Wednesday.

As part of the launch, Sporting Kansas City will donate a portion of all capsule collection sales to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

"The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum is thrilled to team with Sporting KC to commemorate Juneteenth as we reflect on the arduous journey to freedom for African Americans while celebrating and enlightening people about the triumphant story of the Negro leagues," said Bob Kendrick, NLBM President. "The Negro leagues helped build a bridge across the chasm of prejudice, which created a pathway for African American athletes to showcase their immense talents and level the playing field. This collection beautifully captures that winning spirit."

"Through the seemingly incongruous juxtaposition of soccer and baseball, Sporting and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum are retelling an important story that transcends sports and resonates powerfully in our city," said Chad Reynolds, Sporting KC Creative Director. "So much of Kansas City's history is rooted in black history and we couldn't be prouder to commemorate Juneteenth in partnership with an iconic Kansas City institution like the NLBM."

Bridging a gap between past and present, the capsule collection stems from a new partnership between Sporting Kansas City and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum that began earlier this year. The unique partnership between local institutions creates a platform that honors history, educates fans and strengthens community ties across the Kansas City region.

Sporting KC + Negro Leagues Baseball Museum Capsule Collection

T-shirt: Classic cream-colored top with "Kansas City" arched across the chest in baseball typeface with an NLBM patch on the sleeve and a red "KC Heart" jocktag as an homage to the vintage look of the Negro leagues teams.

Scarf: A black and white pinstripe scarf design with the NLBM logo on one side and SKC and "KC Heart" on the reverse.

Two hats: Black and dark grey versions with cream-colored "KC" stitched on the front and an NLBM patch on the side.

On Thursday, Major League Soccer announced its own plans to recognize Juneteenth with a series of initiatives celebrating freedom. MLS programs will include a limited-edition jersey auction and two components that will highlight all matches from June 18-20: Juneteenth-inspired numbers on the jerseys of all players and the playing of the Black National Anthem ("Lift Every Voice and Sing").


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