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Craig At The Field Of Dreams [PHOTOS, VIDEO]

lazer
This lazer video disc was EXPENSIVE in the early ’90s! (Craig Allen photo)

Last Friday, during the 6:00 hour, the fun and games hour, I had the pleasure of being a “lifeline” while Jeff Deminski was testing your knowledge of dialog from famous movies. As it happens, a line from the “Field Of Dreams” came up…

t-shirt
My “Field Of Dreams” t-shirt is my inspiration tonight! Yes, it STILL fits! (Joe V. photo)

Deminski’s eyes got “big,” as I shared, on-air, the fact that I hit a ball out, at the “Field Of Dreams” in Dyersville, Iowa! Yes, the field is REAL!

We both agreed, off-air, that anytime the movie is on TV, that ends the search for what to watch. Both Jeff and I have seen this movie over and over. And, enjoy it every time!

In this heartwarming movie, released in the spring of 1989, Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella (Kevin Costner) hears a voice in his corn field. The voice insists, over and over: “If you build it, he will come.” Kinsella believes that this message is instruction to tear up part of his corn field, and build a baseball field.  Further, he believes that the ghosts of “Shoeless Joe Jackson” (Ray Liotta) and the other seven Chicago White Sox players banned from baseball for throwing the 1919 World Series, will show. When the voices continue, Ray seeks out a reclusive sports writer (James Earl Jones) to help him understand the meaning of the messages and the purpose for his field.

I won’t tell you more…check out “Field Of Dreams” on cable, on demand, or on dvd!

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“Collector’s Edition” on dvd, issued in 1998. (Craig Allen photo)

Its the summer of 1990, and this radio guy has some vacation time coming. So, I fly out to Iowa, and join my friends on their family vacation in the Dubuque area. She (now the ex-wife) grew up in Dyersville, knew the family that owned the farm that was used in the movie, and even “partied” (80s style!) at that farmhouse.

field
It was…heavenly…in 1990! (Craig Allen archives)

One afternoon, we drove out to the farm…up that long and winding dirt road…to the “Field Of Dreams.” Barb got to renew her friendship with the farm family (the Lansings), and I got to hit a few baseballs on the “Field Of Dreams!”

Obviously, the baseball field was built for the movie. The farmhouse was the same in the movie, as in “real life,’ with the exception that the movie production designers put a wrap-around porch roof on the existing home (look at the porch roofline, in the above movie clip).

While we were there, a few cars of “tourists” showed up at “The Field Of Dreams.” And,  tourist buses were also a daily fact of life at the farm…at that time.

There was no entry fee to walk onto the “Field Of Dreams.” FREE!

Signs encouraged you to buy a t-shirt, or other memorabilia, to help support the upkeep of the field. There was a souvenir stand in the red barn. That was 1990.

Flash forward: 2013 brings changes to “The Field Of Dreams.” Good changes, in the fact that the field will remain intact!

“Go the Distance Baseball LLC,” an investment group that includes Wade Boggs, has just purchased the farm and baseball diamond for $3.4 million. They plan on constructing “All-Star Baseball Heaven,” a youth baseball complex with 24 fields and 60 clubhouses around the property. And will, most-importantly, preserve this famous movie baseball field far into the future!

WOW! It has been over 20 years since the “voices” called me to the “Field Of Dreams.” What a thrill to be there…to hear the crack of a bat and ball on the field…as I swung at a good (easy) pitch.

Its true. “Build it, and THEY will come.”

I did!

Will you?

I hope that you get the chance, someday!

 

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