Mainers love to be competitive, and an appreciation of history and tradition is a common trait throughout the state. With that being said, it should come as no surprise that there are a number of official and unofficial “hall of fame” sites and organizations dedicated to Maine athletes, teams, and sports.
To learn more about the history of local athletes who have brought fame and glory across the state, check out some of the following tributes.
General Maine Halls of Fame
Location: South Portland
Established in 1972, the Maine Sports Hall of Fame recognizes the top athletes and sports figures in the state and provides scholarships for outstanding Maine high school student athletes. The organization announces a new class of inductees annually, with biographies available on their websites. Inductees include collegiate star athletes, native residents who have achieved professional success or international recognition, historic coaches, broadcasters, writers, and anyone who has made a significant contribution.
To be eligible for induction into the Hall, nominees must:
- be a Maine sports figure whose achievements have brought distinction and honor to the state of Maine in any field of sport
- be a Maine sports figure or one who has made a major contribution to the development and advancement of sports in the state of Maine
- be a Maine sports figure having five (5) years of retirement from their last competitive event in their sports field of expertise (in extraordinary circumstances this can be waived)
The MCSHoF is a unique regional exhibit that “honors and remembers the outstanding athletes, coaches, administrators, officials, reporters, broadcasters, trainers, designers and other associated positions that have made contributions to sports from the Mid Coast Maine area.”
Interestingly, this Hall is located inside the Dow’s Discount Furniture shop, and primarily available only during store hours, or via private appointment.
Further cementing their shared history, an initiative from the LA Metro Chamber of Commerce to memorialize the Twin Cities’ rich sports tradition. This organization first held an awards banquet in 1984, specifically nominating Red Sox catcher Bill Carrigan.
Like the Mid Coast Sports Hall of Fame, the physical site of this Hall is located inside a local business. Plaques of all Lewiston Auburn Hall of fame inductees are proudly displayed at the classic restaurant, Gippers.
Sport Specific Maine Halls of Fame
Founded in 1969, the Maine Baseball Hall of Fame is a nonprofit organization which seeks to tell the story of baseball in Maine by honoring the top contributor from the state. Each year, HoF inductees are invited onto the field by the Portland Sea Dogs prior to the induction ceremony. The Maine Baseball Hall of Fame organization also awards annual scholarships to local Maine athletes.
Since 2005, the Portland Sea Dogs have inducted top players and coaches from the Boston Red Sox and former Florida Marlins Double-A affiliate. In order order to be eligible, there is a grace period of ten years from when a player first debuted with the Sea Dogs.
Notable inductees include a number of current and former Red Sox and other MLB stars such as Josh Beckett, Jacoby Ellsbury, Adrian Gonzales, Dustin Pedroia, and Hanley Ramirez, and Kevin Youkilis. Each honoree also receives a plaque that is displayed on the concourse of Hadlock Field.
Visitors to the second floor of the Cross Insurance Center in Bangor may have stumbled upon the tribute to Maine’s best basketball players. This exhibit houses artifacts, pictures, and memorabilia of primarily players who have achieved success in the high school game. This Hall of Fame is relatively recent, and inducted its first class in 2014.
Recognized by the Ski Museum of Maine, and sponsored by the Ski Maine Association, this Hall honors the best Alpine and Nordic skiiers from Maine. Visitors can also learn facts and view artifacts about the history of skiing in Maine in addition while learning about some of the sport’s famous faces.
Location: Digital (HoF Committee meets in Bangor)
Founded by Bob Payne in 1987, this organization receives support from the Maine Track Club and Central Maine Striders. Olympians such as Joan Benoit-Samuelson and groundbreakers such as Andrew Sockalexis are recognized by the group.
The Maine Amateur Wrestling Alliance began honoring athletes, coaches, and individuals who represent excellence as ambassadors to the sport.
The MSUSBC is the local chapter of the US Bowling Congress, and the organization inducts individuals who have served or achieved individual success in the sport of American Tenpins.
Created in 1995, the Maine Swimming and Diving Hall of Fame is a digital archive of the state’s top athletes. This Hall of Fame is maintained by the Long Reach Swim Club in Bath.
Maine University Halls of Fame
University Hall of Fame for the Bowdoin Polar Bears athletic program.
While there does not appear to be an official Colby College, Athletics Hall of Fame for the Colby Mules athletic program, the school does honor Retired Numbers of distinguished alumni.
University Hall of Fame for the Husson Eagles athletic program.
University Hall of Fame for the Maine Maritime Academy Mariners athletic program.
University Hall of Fame for the St Joseph’s Monks athletic program.
University Hall of Fame for the University of Maine Black Bear’s athletic program.