Stick ball tradition comes to an end in Springfield - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Stick ball tradition comes to an end in Springfield

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An over half-century-old tradition in the city came to an end on Sunday afternoon, as the 64th annual stick ball game was played outside of the Zanetti School on Howard Street in the South End.

Organizers said with the planned MGM casino taking over the area, Sunday's game would be the final one held in the parking lot.

The participants span generations, which made the last game fun but a bit sad at the same time.

"Well it's a joy when you see grandkids come down here and play with their grandfather," said Rico Daniele, organizer of the event. "One is about 80, the other one is about 16 and that's what life is all about. Just like the family together at the kitchen table, we bring people together. It's a little bit sad of not having stick ball here.  Maybe we'll find another spot, but I doubt it.  It's not the same, you know?"

Organizers said in all the years they played their stick ball game, they never broke a window on the school building.

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