The Palace Theater in Syracuse, N.Y. hosted the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) premiere of Spirit Game: Pride of a Nation. The red carpet event last week was free to all Haudenosaunee, and among those in attendance was honored guest and Onondaga Faithkeeper Oren Lyons.
The Spirit Game: Pride of a Nation film covers the Iroquois Nationals lacrosse team’s journey as they competed in the 2015 Box Lacrosse Championship. The championship was held for the first time in Onondaga Nation Territory in what is now central New York.
The Haudenosaunee Spirit Game: Pride of a Nation premiere included a talk following the screening by the directors Peter Spire and Peter Baxter, as well as Lyons and legendary lacrosse stick maker Alfred Jacques.
When asked what he would like to see come from the Spirit Game: Pride of a Nation movie in terms of educating the public, Oren Lyons had this to say. “This opens the door for the public to see Native people as everyday people. We live in houses and build houses. Our men as ironworkers laid the bones in New York, and built a lot of buildings and bridges.”
Lyons said the film was a body of extraordinary work. “As a history professor, I can see that this film is going to be a big teaching tool to illustrate to the American public that Native people have a culture worth investigating.”