The latest endeavor by WRAL Documentary focuses on Ghosts in the Stadium, a historical film delving into the untold histories of four renowned football stadiums in the Carolinas and their connections to the troubling legacy of race relations in America.
Cristin Severance, a producer for WRAL’s investigative documentary, and Chris Lea, a sports anchor for WRAL, embarked on a journey to uncover the individuals for whom these stadiums were named, their locations, and the impact they had on the communities they displaced.
According to Severance, the idea of a joint project between WRAL Doc and WRAL Sports, proposed by Chris, was met with surprise as they uncovered hidden truths at the locations. These stories hold significance as they are based on facts. Despite some of these incidents occurring over a century ago, their effects are still evident in the present day.
The team of Severance, Lea, and WRAL Documentary Photojournalist Dwayne Myers embarked on a journey through North and South Carolina to delve into the origins of Kenan Stadium at UNC Chapel Hill, Carter-Finely Stadium at NC State, Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, and Memorial Stadium at Clemson University.
Sports arenas are constructed with the intention of unifying people. However, it is worth noting that these four athletic facilities have been built on locations where violence was inflicted upon Black individuals, where enslaved individuals were buried, and where Black communities were displaced in the name of progress. Despite this dark history, there is potential for the unifying power of sports to honor and recognize the forgotten citizens impacted by the presence of these enormous structures.
WRAL Sports Anchor Chris Lea stated that while some believe acknowledging painful histories only creates more division, this is incorrect. He believes that learning about the real, local American history that has influenced our communities can promote understanding and empathy among individuals, as well as facilitate a healing process for all to progress forward.
How to watch Ghosts in the Stadium
Watch on television
The newest WRAL documentary, “Ghosts in the Stadium,” will premiere on WRAL on Wednesday, October 25 at 7:30 p.m. It will be available to watch on television immediately following the 7 p.m. news broadcast.
The film will be shown again on WILM-TV in Wilmington on Saturday, October 28th at 6 o’clock in the evening.
Additionally, it will be shown again on WRAZ FOX50 on Sunday, October 29th at 7:30 PM.
Watch on streaming
The documentary “Ghosts in the Stadium” will be accessible for on-demand streaming at WRALDocumentary.com, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, and Samsung Smart TV starting at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 25.
Watch on YouTube
The documentary will debut on the WRAL Doc YouTube channel on Wednesday, October 25 at 8:00 PM.