Though Andre Dawson will end up with a Montreal Expos cap on his National Baseball Hall of Fame plaque, he plans to celebrate his induction this summer with Cubs fans.
Dawson will headline the "Andre and Friends Celebrity Softball Event" at Schaumburg's Alexian Field July 28, just three days after his Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Cooperstown, N.Y.
Among those joining Dawson at the Schaumburg ballpark will be such fellow former players as Bruce Sutter, Doc Gooden, Dave Parker, George Foster and Steve Garvey as well as celebrity Cubs fans like George Wendt of "Cheers" fame and Jeff Garland from "Curb Your Enthusiasm."
Schaumburg Flyers Managing Partner Rich Ehrenreich said the list of celebrity guests will grow in weeks to come.
Ehrenreich has been a friend of Dawson's agent, Warren Greene, for about a decade. Having felt this was the year Dawson was likely to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, the two began talking about the possibility of such an event months before Dawson's actual election.
Though Ehrenreich also co-owns the Zion-based Lake County Fielders, he always felt the home of the Flyers was a more natural fit for Dawson's Chicago-area homecoming.
"The Fielders are almost on the Wisconsin border," Ehrenreich said. "I think Schaumburg is more of a suburban Chicago locale."
Dawson could not be reached directly Thursday, but said in a statement, "I can't think of a better place to celebrate my induction and be with friends than the Chicago area. The fans in Chicago hold such a special place in my heart, so I'm looking forward to coming home."
Alexian Field at 1999 Springinsguth Road will open an hour before the 4:30 p.m. game between the Flyers and the Northern League rival Joliet Jackhammers on July 28.
During the Flyers game, there will be free autographs from Dawson and the other celebrity guests at the FansEdge Autograph Pavilion and a free commemorative souvenir for every fan who attends.
After the Flyers-Jackhammers game, the celebrities will play a seven-inning exhibition softball game on the field.
For more information, visit flyersbaseball.com or call the Schaumburg Flyers ticket office at (847) 891-2255.