Most folks in the community thought he was off his rocker. But his support system— his wife and daughter, a literary hero from his youth, and a whispery guiding voice — spoke louder than all the critics.
If you’ve seen the film or read W.P. Kinsella’s Shoeless Joe (the book on which the film was based), then you know where the story goes from there.
But if we step out of the cinemascope dreamscape, did you know that the baseball field built for the production on farmland in Dubuque County, Iowa, has had anything but a “dreamy” history since shooting wrapped in 1988?
Built on the intersection of two separately owned farms, the field was a popular tourist attraction for a period after the film’s release, but was later plagued with landowner disputes, waning interest, and economic decline.
Currently, the property is owned by a company in the process of planning and building a multi-field youth baseball and softball complex — a project that has had its share of opposition.
That whole story hasn’t played out yet. It’s unknown if the park will truly preserve and advance the spirit of the book and film, which undeniably served as the genesis of the project.
It’s not difficult to draw parallels from the film to the current state of the wind energy industry. We face an uncertain future. We’re facing a financial hurdle. We have staunch opponents set on curbing our progress. And let’s face it, there’s even a little in-fighting from time to time.
But we also possess a strong purpose — our own whispery voice that cuts through the noise of distractions and detractors.
Like Ray, we’re the only ones who can hear it; we’re the ones charged with making that purpose a reality. It’s telling us to “Go the distance.”
Do we have what it takes?
Thanks for reading,