You are the owner of this article.
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
top story

Hall of Famer-led company purchases control of Field of Dreams Site

  • Updated
  • 0
Field of Dreams

Hall of Famer-led company purchases control of Field of Dreams Site

DYERSVILLE, Iowa (KWWL) -- The Field of Dreams Movie Site and the new accompanying MLB field announced it is under new ownership on Thursday.

This is Heaven, a venture headed by MLB Hall of Famer Frank Thomas, will be purchasing a controlling interest in real estate development company Go the Distance Baseball's ownership in the field.

Thomas was a 5x All-Star during his 19-year career in the MLB and was the consecutive two-time American League Most Valuable Player while playing for the Chicago White Sox.

In August, the All-Star Ballpark Heaven next to the movie site hosted the first MLB game ever played in Iowa. It's already been announced that the MLB will be back in Dyersville next August for another game.

Thomas said he had preliminary conversations with the MLB about making it a yearly tradition.

"I would love to get every team in Major League Baseball to play on this property," he said. "That is very important to all of us."

There are current plans to expand the facilities to include baseball training and tournaments. The site looks to sustain the boost in tourism and economic success that the MLB game brought to the Dyersville area.

Some Dyersville residents have expressed concerns that the expansion would take away some of the magic of the movie site, but Thomas said the plans to build a unique baseball experience wouldn't jeopardize the cornfield oasis dreamed up by Denise Stillman.

"We are committed to honoring the film dream as it has been and is meant to be preserved while securing its long-term viability," Thomas said.

Along with Thomas, Chicago entrepreneur Rick Heidner and former MLB executive Dan Evans are involved in the purchase.

"The Field of Dreams always brings back a lot of memories for me," Dyersville Mayor James Heavens said. "I can remember the first day that Denise Stillman and her husband came to Dyersville to have lunch with me and Jacque Rahe and today, this whole process has come full circle."

Heidner and Evans both had previous involvement with Go the Distance Baseball.

"This place is magical, man," Thomas said. "My whole dream has always been to give back to youth baseball and see kids have the opportunity that I had, and there is no better place in the world than this to grow more fields to get kids involved here daily."

Thomas will now serve as Chief Executive Officer for This is Heaven and Evans will serve as Chief Operating Officer.

"We are excited to lead the future development and expansion of the Field of Dreams in a collaborative spirit with our neighbors and government officials," Thomas said.

Several state, city and community leaders were on hand for Thursday's announcement.

"It kind of shows the support that this property and this field have had from the community and what it means to all of us," Dyersville Economic Development Director Jacque Rahe said.

The new owners said their first order of business would be to add water and sewage to the iconic site.

Earlier this month, the MLB Stadium in Dyersville was named "Ballpark of the Year" by BaseballParks.com.