October 28, 2019

Francis Marion University set to honor founding president at Doug’s Day

Francis Marion University set to honor founding president at Doug’s Day

Francis Marion University’s year-long celebration of its 50th anniversary year goes into full swing with “Doug’s Day,” its first-ever founder’s day event, on Nov. 14.

Doug’s Day is named in honor of FMU’s founding president, Dr. Doug Smith. It’s a celebration of Smith’s birthday, and his tremendous contributions to the university beginnings. 

Doug’s Day will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Griffin Athletic Complex on the FMU campus. It is designed as a gathering for the entire FMU community and will feature food, fun, and a special concert by the legendary Edwin McCain. McCain, whose iconic hits “I Could Not Ask For More” and “I’ll Be,” remain music staples, is a Charleston native with thousands of fans across the state.

McCain’s concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. 

Francis Marion President Dr. Fred Carter says the event will be a fitting tribute to one of the foundational leaders of the University.

“As FMU begins its fiftieth year, it’s important to remember the man who established the foundation upon which everything has been built,” Carter says. “If you’ve ever been a part of this place, you understand the reverence afforded Doug Smith. He wasn’t simply our first president; he was, and will always be, the father of the college. This day is a celebration of his life and legacy.”

The concert and admission to the grounds for Doug’s Day is free. Food and drink from a variety of food trucks and other vendors, will be on sale. A DJ will provide music on the plaza ahead of McCain’s concert, which will be held in FMU’s baseball stadium. 

The event is open to the public. 

Francis Marion’s 50th year celebration will continue throughout the coming months. Upcoming events include the annual community Christmas party in early December; FMU’s homecoming on Feb. 1, featuring members of the University’s five national championship athletic teams; a special all-FMU concert by the Florence Symphony Orchestra on Feb. 10; and a grand gala on April 7 at the FMU Performing Arts Center.

The gala will honor FMU’s legacy of providing access to exemplary education in the region and the state, and will also help pave the way for its future. Proceeds from the event will support the University’s First Generation Fund initiative, which provides resources to support first generation college students attending FMU.