If you live in, or have ever lived in Indiana, you have probably seen the movie 'Hoosiers'. Almost 35 years after its release, the film still resonates with people state-wide.
At the time, we had no idea the influence it would have all these years later," said 'Hoosiers' actor Brad Long. "It's one of those things that people tend to gravitate towards that make you feel better or make you feel that you can accomplish something that you wouldn't normally be able to do. That is the magic of underdogs that they win because when people think if they can do it we can do it."
They say in 49 other states it's just basketball, but this is Indiana and whether you come from Evansville, Terre Haute, Bloomington, Indianapolis, Knightstown, or Schererville, this gym is a part of our history. It's like Coach Dale said in the movie, this is your team. This is our game and this is our gym, and right now because of Covid-19, our gym needs help.
"We rely on visitors to come in for tours and buy a t-shirt and put a donation in the donation box, so it did really hurt having those three months without visitors and we've been back on a limited basis now, but we're still not back any place close to that 60 thousand plus visitors we normally get," said Hoosier Gym Events Coordinator Bob Garner.
"We're just in uncertain times," said Long. "But we're Americans, we'll get through this time and I always give a lot of credit to Bob Garner and the guys that volunteer here and run the gym. They have figured out way to still have the gym on certain events in a safe manner. People can still come in a safe manner with social distancing and still be able to enjoy the gym, getting to walk down in the locker room, walk up in the bleachers, it's just a special feeling. Sometimes in these uncertain times when there's things you can't do, things you can, this might be an escape for people to come and feel good again about getting back to normalcy."
The film teams many life lessons, and one of its central themes is second chances, something we can still learn from today.
"All through the film you see Coach Dale getting a second chance, you see some of the players getting a second chance, you see Shooter getting a second chance and I think that is a good recipe in life that if at first you don't succeed try try again," said Long. "It's an old cliche but there's a lot of validity to that especially in America we believe in giving people a second chance and sometimes that's all you need is a second chance."