The humble spaldeen was gone but not forgotten. It disappeared two decades ago from inner-city streets, but not from the memories of generations of stickball and handball enthusiasts.
Recently, the high-bouncing pink ball, which first appeared in 1949, once again careened into public notice: Word came that Spalding Sports Worldwide in Chicopee, Mass., planned to reintroduce the spaldeen, and the company's switchboards began lighting up.
Just two days after word of the ball's return had spread, Keiler & Co. in Farmington, Conn., created a Web site (www.spaldeen.com), which features Spaldeen trivia and loads of bouncing balls.
The site is part of a campaign being designed for the New York market, where stickball tournaments using balls labeled with the Web address are currently being organized, said Spalding representative Jackie Beck. Traditional advertising will follow later this year, she added. --Lauren Wiley