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Field of Dreams matchup most-watched MLB regular season game in 16 years; Dyersville already preparing for 2022

The Dyersville Area Chamber of Commerce expects the events surrounding next year's game to be bigger and better than ever.
Credit: AP
Chicago White Sox players walk on the field before a baseball game against the New York Yankees, Thursday, Aug. 12, 2021, in Dyersville, Iowa. The Yankees and White Sox are playing at a temporary stadium in the middle of a cornfield at the Field of Dreams movie site, the first Major League Baseball game held in Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

DES MOINES, Iowa — The Dyersville Area Chamber of Commerce expects next year's Major League Baseball game at the Field of Dreams to be literally bigger and better than ever.

Executive director Karla Thompson tells Local 5 the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic forced the city to scale back some of its plans surrounding Thursday night's between the Chicago White Sox and the New York Yankees, which has been widely praised as one of MLB's best ideas in years.

Thompson said the chamber wanted to bring in some former major leaguers and movie stars beyond Kevin Costner, who gave opening remarks before Chicago's thrilling 9-8 walk-off win Thursday.

Plans for some mobile museums to accompany the "Beyond the Game" watch party in Dyersville's town square were scuttled as well.

The game totaled 5.9 million viewers across FOX and FOX Deportes, the network announced. 

The event went so well, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred announced before the first pitch had even been tossed there will be another game in Dyersville next August.

"There was a lot of things we wanted to do. But because of COVID, we had to cut back," Thompson said. "So this was like a good test year."

Thompson said they do not yet know how many people visited the town beyond the roughly 8,000 fans in attendance or how much money the game brought in. But she did say the town is beyond thrilled to get another chance to host a game between two undetermined opponents next summer. 

"Just stay tuned," Thompson said. "We got a lot of positive feedback from all over."

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