HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK, Arkansas — The dedication of a room in the Hot Springs Convention Center named in honor of the late baseball historian and Hot Springs community leader Mike Dugan will be the opening event Saturday, August 28, of the 2021 Hot Springs Baseball Weekend.
“Mike was a tireless supporter of our city,” Visit Hot Springs CEO Steve Arrison said. “It would take most of a day to outline Mike Dugan’s contributions to Hot Springs, but he was the guiding force in our establishment of Hot Springs as the Birthplace of Major League Baseball Spring Training. And that makes it especially appropriate that we dedicate Room 105 in the Convention Center in Mike’s honor as the opening event for Baseball Weekend, which he helped establish and grow.”
Dugan died earlier this year.
The Hot Springs Advertising and Promotion Commission voted unanimously to dedicate the Mike Dugan Room, only the seventh time in 23 years since the expanded Convention Center opened in 1998 that the Commission has approved the naming of a room.
The dedication will begin at 9:30 a.m. August 28, followed by the day full of Baseball Weekend activities.
Arrison said, “There are numerous reasons for honoring Mike,” including:
• Dugan was one of the founding historians of the Historic Hot Springs Baseball Trail.
• He was the founder of the Hot Springs Baseball Weekend, which has been held since 2017.
• He was a leader in planning the new Majestic Park Baseball Complex and led the campaign to approve the facility’s financing.
• He was a consultant in the filming of the award-winning documentary, “The First Boys of Spring,” which traced Hot Springs’ role as the place where Major League spring training had its birthplace in the 1880s. He also appeared in the film as a Boston innkeeper who was one of the Boston Red Sox’s biggest boosters.
• He handled all of the city’s media requests for interviews and tours about the history of Hot Springs as a baseball landmark.
The Dugan Room, which is on the side of the building next to Horner Hall, facing the Hotel Hot Springs, is the room that has been used every year for greeting the guest baseball legends who come to Hot Springs for the Baseball Weekend.
This year’s Baseball Weekend will feature panel discussions by legends Al (The Mad Hungarian) Hrabosky, fearsome pitcher Rich (Goose) Gossage, legendary baserunner Andre (The Hawk) Dawson and Hall of Fame outfielder Jim Edmonds as the celebrity guests.
For more information call Steve Arrison at 501-321-2027.