The Chicago Cubs vs. Cincinnati Reds baseball game played at Field of Dreams in Dyersville was a spectacular experience shared by thousands who attended, and millions more who watched the televised game in August. But it was the events surrounding Field of BIG Dreams that week that were truly magical, as news of the charity was shared and celebrated in the days leading up to the big game.
The first of many events began with the incredible Dream Big Legends Charity Golf Tournament held at The General Golf Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa in Galena, Illinois. Frank Thomas greeted the fourteen foursomes who participated, and each were joined by former well-known athletes and legends including Fergie Jenkins, George Foster, Scott Eyre, Ken Griffey Sr., Dan Hampton, Carlos Zambrano, and Tim Raines to name a few. Players were “drafted” into their foursomes, and guests enjoyed a fabulous day of golf on this championship course, followed by a reception and silent auction.
Later that day, Frank Thomas met with members of the media in Dyersville to talk about Field of BIG Dreams and why he wanted to start this charity. He spoke about his own family’s experience when he lost a young sister to leukemia, and how his brother had served in the U.S. military and he became more aware of challenges that veterans can experience. As Frank shared “Everyone deserves to dream, yet every day, trauma, disease, and isolation can turn dreams into darkness. This is especially true for children battling cancer and veterans plagued by mental and emotional challenges. For them, dreams seem to evaporate and life becomes smaller. We say, it’s time for them to dream big again.”
Later that night, more than 270 guests attended the Field of BIG Dreams Reception hosted by Frank Thomas at Q Casino in Dubuque, Iowa. Attendees enjoyed a night of music, inspiring words from speakers including Frank Thomas, Ryan Sartori (a former pediatric cancer survivor), as well as Jim Wagner and Al Rowell of Veteran’s Freedom Center in Dubuque. The program ended with a live auction hosted by Tim Markham of Markham Auction Service, who entertained the crowd while auctioning items ranging from rare sports memorabilia to priceless experiences such as overnight stays at the Field of Dreams farmhouse. Our new mission video was also shared with the crowd, and some individuals featured in the video were in attendance that night, including young pediatric cancer survivor Kyden Decker and his family, and veteran Brain Pfeiler and his wife Katie.
Special thanks to everyone who helped us kick off festivities to celebrate news of our charity, including Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa, Beyond The Game, DRA, Travel Dubuque, Q Casino, and the hundreds of guests who joined us in support of these amazing events.