Road to Omaha Sculpture
The Road to Omaha, sculpted in 1999 by Omaha artist John Lajba (pronounced “Lie-bah”), serves as a permanent testimonial to the enduring sports tradition. Lajba, a professional artist since 1982, has achieved a worldwide reputation through high-profile commissions such as a likeness of Dale Earnhardt displayed at Florida’s Daytona Motor Speedway, a near-life sized figure of NBA star Vince Carter for Manland High School, a bust of Bob Hope for the Bob Hope Village in Ft. Walton, Fla., and a full-length bronze sculpture of aviation pioneer James “Jimmy” Doolittle displayed at the Air Force Association in Arlington, Va. Mr. Lajba also has sculptures in Japan and Poland.
The 1,500-pound bronze sculpture depicts four baseball players celebrating victory at home plate. It was originally dedicated on June 7, 1999, during Omaha’s 50th anniversary year as the home of the Men’s College World Series at Rosenblatt Stadium. In his comments at the dedication, CWS, Inc., President Jack Diesing said, “We believe this statue embodies the competitive spirit, the camaraderie and the pure excitement of the NCAA Men’s College World Series. We also believe that 50 years from now, fans will continue to be captivated and players inspired by the sight of this magnificent statue.”
The sculpture was refurbished by John Lajba prior to being moved to its new home on the northwest corner of Charles Schwab Field Omaha (formerly TD Ameritrade Park Omaha). A ceremony to rededicate the sculpture occurred in April of 2011.
Since 1999, a miniature replica of The Road to Omaha sculpture named in honor of John D. Diesing Sr., has been awarded to the most outstanding player at the conclusion of the Series.
The Road to Omaha sculpture was a gift to the City of Omaha and Series fans from College World Series of Omaha, Inc. CWS, Inc., owns the sole and exclusive right to make reproductions of The Road to Omaha sculpture. Visitors are welcome to take photographs of the sculpture for their personal use and enjoyment, but the sculpture cannot otherwise be reproduced in any way, including by photograph, without the prior written consent of CWS, Inc.