White Sox raffling off tickets for game against Yankees at Field of Dreams in Iowa

"If you build it, he will come."

It is one of the great lines from one of the greatest baseball movies ever. "Field of Dreams" is about fathers and sons, family and the timelessness of baseball.

Tens of thousands of baseball fans each year make the pilgrimage to Dyersville, Iowa to visit the set of the iconic 1989 movie, to play on the field, sit in the porch swing of the old farmhouse, and walk out of the cornfield like the movie's baseball ghosts.

"This takes you back to your childhood," said Pennsylvania baseball fan Mike Mister, as he toured the field with his wife."You just want to go out there and throw the ball."

Now, looming over the Field of Dreams is a new ballpark where the White Sox and Yankees will make history on August 12th.

"To get this game scheduled was a five year undertaking," said Roman Weinberg, who helps operate the Field of Dreams site. Roman says it is the first Major League Baseball game in Iowa history.

MLB has built an 8,000 seat stadium in the cornfield adjacent to the movie set. Its dimensions are the exact same as the home of the 1919 Black Sox -- a team central to the movie’s plot.

"It has been designed to emulate the original Comiskey Park," said Weinberg. "And really trying to keep that vintage feel and look and respect the heritage of the game."

But there are plenty of Iowa touches. The famous corn in the outfield, and dugouts made from recycled barn wood.

"They found old barn wood that they painted black," said Weinberg. "Again we talk about respecting the game. But we're talking about respecting the culture of Iowa, too."


All of it is temporary. The field and fences will remain, but the giant lights and stands will be taken away in lieu of the next possible major league game.

Iowa residents are getting the first crack at tickets through a statewide lottery. Any that wind up on the secondary market are expected to start in the hundreds of dollars.

Downtown Dyersville – population 4,000 – is just a couple miles away and will be hosting a huge viewing party in the town square.

Every hotel within 75 miles is booked, but there are other lodging options.

"Here locally we have residents who opened up their homes so people can stay with them," said Karla Thompson, who heads the Dyersville Area Chamber of Commerce. "So if they contact the Dyersville Chamber they will hook them up with local residents and they'll get that Dyersville hospitality."

Visitors can also check out the Field of Dreams museum, which features displays on the movie and baseball history. Or warm up for the game with a cold one at a craft brewery inside an historic textile mill.

"We're gonna try and expand outside the building here and have areas where people can sit outside," said Tom Olberding, owner of Textile Brewing. "We're gonna have a food truck to try and supplement."

Or you can follow the lead of White Sox fans Julie and Scott Johnson, who visited the Field of Dreams three weeks before their favorite team.

"We knew we weren't going to be able to get tickets so we thought we'd check it out ahead of time," said Scott.

"See what was going on here. You know it's exciting. It's fun," Julie added.