I don't consider myself a pro like my friend Lindsay at Iamnotastalker.com in my writing skills or in the format that I will present my blog, so please don't judge me. This will be about my stories from the road. I will post some additional pictures and some screen shots too so people can see the comparison shots of the movie to how it looks today. Any movie name that is discussed in the blog will be clickable so you can see my pictures. I will probably write a blog about once a month. I will discuss my most recent trip first and work back from there, unless I make a new trip in the meantime. So here we go.
This day took place in August of 2010. I woke up early knowing I would have a very long day of travel ahead of me. This turned out to be the longest I have ever driven in one day as I went 694 miles. My trip was all planned around going to a celebrity/senior professional golf tournament that was held at the Brickyard Crossing Golf Course in Indianapolis. Before I make a trip, I always get my routes all figured out ahead of time for my plan of attack.
This particular trip I wanted to head over to the Sheridan, Indiana area to see a couple of locations from the movie Hoosiers. Early in the movie Gene Hackman is seen making his initial drive to Hickory and he passes a white barn where a couple of kids are shooting baskets. This was really a nothing location in the movie but since I knew where it was I just had to get a picture of it. Just after I parked the car it started to rain a bit so I thought this may be a sign of a long day, but as I approached the barn on foot to take my picture, the rain stopped. As you can see in the picture, the basketball hoop is now gone.
I moved on to my next location, which was the place Gene Hackman drives up to get gas in a very small town. This town is called Terhune and this building has changed a lot. The gas pumps are now gone plus the grain elevators seen in the screen shot have since been torn down. It is always a little sad to see things change, but that is also the fun part of seeing a filming location in person - to see what has changed since the movie was made.
My next place I visited was the church seen in the pivotal scene where the townspeople vote to attempt to remove Coach Dale before Jimmy tells then he's ready to play but he won't if the coach is fired. The church looks pretty much like it did in the movie but, unfortunately I could not get inside to take more pictures as it looks like the church is not in service anymore.
I then headed for the golf tournament. I will not talk much about the tournament but, I wanted to post a couple of pictures of the racetrack as the golf course runs right next to the track and there are also a few holes that run inside the track.
After I left the golf tournament, I knew I was about to get into the meat of my travels as it would be a three-hour trip to my next destination. The next location was one I have been thinking about for years as it was the home stadium for the Rockford Peaches in the movie A League Of Their Own. This was the trip's main attraction for me and I was not disappointed once I finally got there. I had to call ahead to have a worker meet me at the ball park so I could get inside and take my pictures. Once I met him I knew I was going to have the opportunity to go anywhere in the park I wanted as he was a very nice man. When you get into a place like that it is very hard to know where to go first as all of these different scenes from the movie started going through my head. The first thing I noticed was the outfield wall looked pretty much the same as it did in the movie. The old time advertisements were still on the wall, which made you feel you were really at the Rockford Peaches field.
The most memorable place to see from the field was the drinking fountain in the Rockford dugout. The scene where a hungover Jimmy Dugan played by Tom Hanks had just finished his first game of managing and is getting cooled off from the drinking fountain water and gets asked by Ira Lowenstein to shape it up a little bit and Dugan spits his chew on Ira's foot. It was really cool to see the same fountain was still there. One tidbit about the stadium. It was built for the movie and now a semipro team now plays there.
I felt a little rushed to leave as I knew I had a few more places to see and I didn't want to keep the nice man any longer as it was a very hot day. I ventured on to the town of Henderson, Kentucky to check out the house where the Rockford Peaches stayed. As I pulled up to the house I was met by a neighbor that knew exactly why I was there. He welcomed me to his town and told me the owner of the house was in Florida on vacation and I could go anywhere on the property to take pictures. I felt kind of funny about doing that but did lean in to take a couple of pictures a little closer to the house. He talked about how the crew and actors took three days to film their scenes. He also told me the story that Tom Hanks' trailer must have had an air circulation problem because when you see him around the house in the movie he was very sick. Because Tom's trailer was malfunctioning the man invited Tom to stay one night in his house and Tom insisted on sleeping on the couch instead of in a guest room. He said Tom threw up during the evening. That is the man's claim to fame that Tom Hanks threw up in his house. Here is a screen shot of the house from the movie.
Now it was back to Indiana and this time to the city of Evansville, to visit the rest of the locations on this trip. The first place I was going to visit was the house from the television show Roseanne. Yes, you read that correctly: somehow the exterior of the house was in Evansville Indiana and not in Chicago. I am not really a fan of the show but I know there are a lot of people that were so I knew I had to take a picture of it since I was in the area. Some location visits have an interesting story to go with them and this one was kind of a funny one. I drove up to the house and noticed a couple of people on their porch kind of chuckling at me, so I had to see what was up. They said I bet you are here to see the Roseanne house and I said yes. The man said I was the third person of the day to stop by and the eleventh person to stop by this weekend. Can you imagine that? I couldn't but then I understood when the lady said the town was having a scavenger hunt and this house was one of the places people had to visit and get a picture of. I told them I was not part of the hunt and they said there are others who stop by from time to time. Here is a picture of the house. Some day I will have a television houses section for the site so here is a preview for now.
The next location was the other baseball stadium shown in the movie and it was home to the Racine Bells. In real life it is known as Bosse Stadium. This place is a little bigger than the Rockford field. I was pretty excited to visit this field too. I had to wait until after the minor league game had finished before I could get inside. Once I did get inside I was on my own so I was not allowed on the field or dugouts this time but I still got the pictures I wanted. I was in there so long that they almost locked me in. I was a little disappointed to see that the outside of the stadium had changed a lot so I could not get exact pictures of the ending as the sisters say goodbye to each other as they board their respective buses. Here is a screen shot of the famous building seen beyond the right field wall.
I knew at this time I was down to two different locations and I didn't have a lot of sunlight left so I knew I needed to be quick from here on which was OK because they were minor locations. I headed a little west of town to visit the softball field where Dottie and Kit were being scouted by Jon Lovitz's character near the beginning of the movie. Remember this place was supposed to be in Oregon so I guess they needed to find a hilly area and I think they succeeded in doing so. This field was out in the middle of nowhere. I got there and saw the parking lot had a fence around it and was nervous I would not get onto the field but it was just latched and not locked. It took me forever to locate this place in my pre-trip research so it is always a thrill to go someplace that very few movie fans have been.
The final location was kind of bittersweet as on my way there I came across a fatal car crash. There were people along the road crying and it was a mess. When I finally arrived at the final location of this adventure I was a little disappointed to see that building looked so different then it did in the movie. I knew this going, in but still part of me hoped I was wrong. The location from the movie was the exterior of the bar called "The Suds Bucket," which is where the dancing took place. There really isn't much to say here since most of the action took place in the interior, which was in Berwyn, Illinois.
From there I knew I had a five-hour drive home but it went by real fast as I was excited to see how my pictures turned out. If you liked the blog or the new part of the site post a comment so I will know there is interest.