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Hey, Is This Heaven? No, It’s Iowa.

I know it’s been a few days since I’ve posted, but the parental units are in town for the first time since October so I’ve been spending just about every waking moment with them since they arrived Friday morning. We went to Art Fair on the Square yesterday, and today, we got in the car and drove two hours to visit the setting of my dad’s all-time favorite film, Field of Dreams in Dyersville, Iowa, and some other places.

We set out from Madison at about 11:30 AM, bound for Galena, Illinois, which doubled in the movie as Chisholm, Minnesota. There was an art festival going on so the town was full of people. Galena is basically one long strip of cute little shops and old storefronts. It was very quaint and decked-out for a town that small. There, we saw the DeSoto House, which doubled as the “Welcome to Chisholm” sign; the Logan House, which was also a bar in the film; and a local doctor’s office which was also the front door of Moonlight Graham’s office in the movie. The weather was not looking promising, and we needed to press on to Dyersville, so we left.

An hour later, after crossing the Mississippi River into Iowa, we ambled down the dirt road that led to Field of Dreams. It was an actual baseball field built for the 1988 movie of the same name, on the Lansing Farm. The families who owned the farm bought the rights to the name, and they make money off of merchandise. Though the farmhouse where the Kinsella family lived is a private residence and closed to the public, everything outdoors is free and open to the public. It’s all still there: the baseball field, the lights, the cornfield, the bleachers where Karin fell, the spot where Archie transformed into Doc Graham, and of course, the Kinsella house. I learned that when they made the film, they actually had to build a platform in the cornfield so that Kevin Costner could be seen above the cornstalks. There was a family there playing baseball, but Dad and I were able to walk around the bases together. I even walked down a few trails to find some geocaches and took funny pictures with the corn. Everyone visiting and working there seemed happy and chatty; true “Midwest nice.”

Other than that, there’s not much to Dyersville. We stopped at a McDonalds, and then went straight back to Madison, which was a little over two hours. All in all, it was a good day trip; Galena is adorable and the movie site is still as it was.

Thanks for reading; I’ve got a few fun blog posts in the works for this week, including reviews of the two books I finished on the ride to and from Dyersville, for which I did not have to drive, thankfully.