The kempt, bluegrass fairways of Manteno Golf Club and Learning Center’s 18-hole course connect across 6,462 yards of relatively flat, golfer-friendly terrain. Groves of trees stand at the edges of each short-grass corridor, their outstretched branches and open catcher’s mitts ready to snag any errant drive. Each hole concludes on the well-clipped bent grass of the course’s putting surfaces, which create consistent but slick fast-breaking putts. In addition, players must draw, fade, or skip balls over and around water hazards that come into play on seven holes. An onsite driving range warms up muscles before rounds, and the center’s restaurant and pub refuels weary bodies after a day of birdie-hunting and 9-iron jousting. Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Length of 6,462 yards from the farthest tees * Course rating of 70.8 from the farthest tees * Slope rating of 120 from the farthest tees * Four tee options
Monster Mini Golf welcomes guests of all ages with 18 holes of spooky, glow-in-the-dark fun. Fog machines, colorful lasers, and special effects lighting surround the custom-designed indoor course. Meanwhile, an energetic soundtrack of 70s, 80s, and 90s party music keeps spirits high as the visitors conquer each hole?s monster-themed obstacles and hazards. In between songs, the course DJ pumps up the crowds with interactive games and trivia questions, rewarding lucky winners with take-home prizes. Groups of family and friends can return to one of the private party rooms once they finish the course or they can visit Monster Mini Golf?s arcade and play on the glowing air hockey tables, skee ball machines, and other games.
With two 18-hole courses and one 9-hole course under its pristine jurisdiction, Green Garden Country Club binds together 45 distinct holes molded to its naturally undulating terrain. The club’s original 18—known today as the Blue Course—winds through dense woods and over numerous swings in elevation, while its other 18, the Gold Course, holds one of the club’s most celebrated features in the 10th hole’s island green. Meanwhile, the 9-hole Emerald Course, the club’s newest, mixes up the style of play with a Scottish links layout, rewarding accuracy off the tee and steadiness in the face of stiff breezes and upturned kilts.
Though on-course play is subject to the whims of Mother Nature, practice at Green Garden Country Club is a year-round affair. In the warm months, players iron out slices and hooks on the 30-acre driving range and calibrate touch on the 10,000-square-foot putting green. When the weather turns colder, players can haul their sticks to the club’s Golf Dome, where they’ll find 42 hitting stations on two levels and practice greens for perfecting putts, chips, and celebratory backflips.
Tucked away in the wooded enclave of Mokena, Willow Run Golf Course invites duffer duos to linger over its nine holes of mature, tree-lined fairways. Seated behind the wheel of an electronically powered golf steed, golfers can jet from hole to hole, making sure to pop a wheelie in greeting fellow linksmen to ensure proper etiquette. Putter in hand, pairs of golfers can descend on Willow Run's array of demanding holes, with variable yardages ranging from 120 to 520, and scheme their way around multiple sand pits and two ball-hungry water hazards. After taming the 2,930 yards of green-graced canvas and then repeating the 9-hole course to play a full 18, sated sportsmen and women can sashay over to the Willow Run lounge for post-game drinks or stick around for the pro shop's after-hours craft class for making personalized terra-cotta golf tees.
It's unlikely that any historic kingdom had batting cages and water slides, but to be fair, Knight's Action Park is a lot more fun than an actual castle. On one side of the park, guests can don swimsuits and hop aboard bumper boats, slip down slides, or set out in paddle boats. Seven mini slides teach smaller children the fun of water-park attractions, while statues of giant sea creatures teach them that life is terrifying. Across the way, a 50-tee driving range lets golfers hone their swing, and an 18-hole mini-golf course caters to putters of all ages. The park's assortment of land-based amusements also includes a Ferris wheel, an arcade, and go-karts.
Designed in 1960 by John Ellis, the Tuckaway Golf Club course is located 40 miles from downtown and features 6,225 yards of greens, fairways, and sand traps. Though only one par 5 exists on the front nine, the back nine challenges players to make up for lost scoring opportunities with three par 5s and cups not covered with cellophane. Gently sloping fairways bob and weave through beautifully forested acreage, bending around majestic pines and stately oak trees and opening up onto small greens. Prior to tee times, players can practice their hacks on the driving range's 20 grass tees or work on greenside feel at the chipping and pitching green.
Course at a Glance: Par: 72 Length: 6,225 yards Rating: 69.7 Slope: 117