Dozens of professional and collegiate athletes and hundreds of Native American youth from across the country spent a week in Whiteriver in mid-June, 2000, to participate in life-skills seminars, sports clinics, and for many of those attending, a chance to play in an exhibition basketball game featuring the pros against Native American All-Stars inside recently-opened Chief Alchesay Activity Center.
The events were part of NativeVision, a unique national youth enrichment and empowerment initiative for Native American children, operated by the Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health. It was launched in 1996 in partnership with the NFL Players Association and the Nick Lowery Charitable Foundation. NativeVision conducts six camps throughout the year during school breaks, and has reached more than 40,000 Native youth and tribal community members since its inception.
Professional athletes taking part in NativeVision 2000 included:
From the NFL: Nick Lowery of the Kansas City Chiefs, Jim Warne of the Cincinnati Bengals, Joey Browner of the Minnesota Vikings, John Olenchalk of the Chiefs, Scottie Graham of the Vikings, Steve Jordan of the Vikings, Christian Okoye of the Chiefs, Sid Justin of the St. Louis Rams, Jim O/Brien of the Baltimore Colts, Mike Bell of the Chiefs, Tony Linhart of the Colts, former Buffalo Bills coach Tom Bresnehan and Earl Edwards of the Bills and San Francisco 49ers.
From basketball: Dave Smoot of the ABA Virginia Squires, Bud Stallworth of the Seattle Supersonics and New Orleans Jazz, Steve Chubin of the Indiana Pacers, Joe Merriweather of the New York Knicks and Houston Rockets, Evette Ott of the University of Kansas, Kim White or Park University, Danielle Shareef of the University of Kansas, Reggie Johnson of the Philadelphia 76ers and four other NBA teams, Dennis Awtrey of the Phoenix Suns, Tom Chambers of the Suns and Connie Hawkins of the Suns, Los Angeles Lakers and Atlanta Hawks.
Baseball players included: Bo Diaz of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Mike Macksudian of the Minnesota Twins.
Soccer players included: Todd Beane of the Reno Rattlers, Shaun Rai of Dartmouth College, Ezra Bayles of Colorado College and Maite Zabala of the University of California at Berkeley.
Volleyball players included: David Noble and Nikki Stover of the University of San Francisco and Nana Allison and Paula Feathers of the University of New Mexico.
Also participating in NativeVision 2000 were runners from the Native American team WINGS: Chance Rush, Myra Truax and Pam White.
It is believed the professionals prevailed in the basketball game. Chambers, a 6-10 forward who retired from the NBA just three years earlier, played the enforcer and made sure of the victory. Although many of the pros were past their prime, depth certainly was not a factor, as can be seen in the team photo (right).