It’s time to start planning for vacations this year! ILLINOISouth is home to many great sights and has something for everyone. This combined with our restaurants and dining options you can make a whole trip out of our Sights to See!
On this edition of Sights to See check out Gateway Motor Sports. This family-friendly activity will have you on the edge of your seat with some racing fun! Located only 15 minutes from St. Louis, Gateway Motor Sports Park and its surrounding amenities provide a weekend full of fun!
The leaves are beginning to change and the weather is becoming more bearable as the days get shorter. ILLINOISouth is known for many things and our amazing golf courses are no exception! We have put together a short list of courses for you to take a look and get playing! For a full listing on all of our courses, please click here.
Arlington Greens Golf Course
200 Arlington Drive
Granite City, IL
Arlington Greens is an 18-hole public golf course featuring open play, league play, lessons, outings, and tournaments. The course has 7,200 yards with a par of 72. Also located on site is an all-weather and grass driving range, putting and chipping greens, as well as a clubhouse and a banquet room. Arlington Greens is proud to be the home course of the Collinsville High School Golf Team.
Annbriar Golf Course
1524 Birdie Lane
For over 23 years, Annbriar Golf Course has been offering 18 holes of public play on over 226 acres. The course has 6,800 yards with a par of 72. Annbriar is also equipped to host a variety of events including banquets and weddings. The clubhouse features the Smokehouse restaurant as well as a fully equipped Pro Shop. Golf Digest has rated Annbriar one of America’s Top 500 “Places to Play”, making is a great choice when thinking about where you want to tee off.
North County Country Club
703 W. Market Street
Red Bud, IL
This 9-hole course provides a challenging, yet rewarding playing experience with zoysia fairways, sand traps, and two lakes. The course is 2,800 yards with a par of 35. After some time on the course, players can stop buy the clubhouse for food, drinks or to purchase golf accessories. Guests can also rent the clubhouse for private parties.
White Oak Golf Course
545 Rec Area Road
White Oak Golf Course is a 9-hole course located within the Marissa Recreational Area. The course is 6,100 yards with a par of 36. Tee times are not required to play on the course. After a round players can also enjoy the two lakes for fishing, picnic grounds and a wooded site for camping.
Other courses in the area:
Stonewolf Golf Club | 18-holes
1195 Stonewolf Trail
Fairview Heights, IL
The Hills Golf Club at McKendree University | 18-holes
1015 Belleville Street
Southwestern Lakes Golf Club | 9-holes
5500 State Route 4
Elmwood Golf Club | 9-holes
1400 Eiler Road
Indian Springs Golf Course
21347 IL 185
Indian Springs Golf Course is an 18-hole championship course nestled in beautifully landscaped terrain. The course is over 6,200 yards with a par of 70. Indian Springs provides a challenge to the most seasoned players, but also offers a relaxing a peaceful environment for the casual player. The course also features banquet facilities with seating for up to 200 people.
Roland Barkau Memorial Golf Course
1501 North Waterworks Road
Get ready to experience the beauty that Southern Illinois has to offer on 18-holes of great golf. The Roland Barkau Memorial Golf Course features over 6,500 yards with a par of 71. The front 9 follows the natural lay of the land while the back 9 invites players to a more open style of golf. There is a restaurant on site to grab a bite to eat as well as a Pro Shop open daily.
Twin Oaks Golf Club
21900 State Route 127
This 9-hole course features rolling hills, mature Oak trees, and water hazards on a beautifully maintained public course. With over 3,100 yards and a par of 36, the course proves perfect for beginners and intermediate golfers or those that want to play a quick round. The course also makes a perfect location for your next fundraiser event or family reunion.
St. Elmo Golf Club
St. Elmo, IL
St. Elmo Golf Club is a 9-hole course semi-private golf course. The public is welcome and memberships are also available. The course is 3,200 yards with a par of 36. The clubhouse features a restaurant and a Pro Shop selling clothing, hats and merchandise.
Other courses in the area:
Governors Run Golf & Country Club | 18-holes
3300 Governors Dr.
Greenview Golf Course | 18-holes
2801 Putter Dr.
Bent Oak Golf Course| 9-holes
1725 South Broadway Street
Nashville Municipal Golf Course | 9-holes
660 East Memorial Drive
Richland Country Club
5499 North IL 130
Located in Olney, Illinois this golf course features 18-holes. The par 71 layout offers two very different nine hole tracts. The course has over 6,100 yards with four different sets of tees, offering play to all ages and skill sets. Richland Country Club also features a driving range, a pool and a full service bar.
Mt. Carmel Municipal Golf Course
700 Park Road
Mt. Carmel, IL
The 18-hole Mt. Carmel Municipal Golf Course in Mount Carmel is a public golf course that opened in 1920. The course measures over 6,300 yards from with a par of 71 and features 4 sets of tees for different skill levels so all skills are welcome on the course.
Casey Country Club
203 North East 13th Street
This 9-hole course is known for its famous landmark. The World’s Largest Golf Tee is located here along with 2,500 yards of great golf. The par for the course is 35 and it also features a clubhouse with snacks, souvenirs and a Pro Shop. The clubhouse is also available to rent for events.
Carmi Country Club
833 County Road 1350 N
Carmi Country Club is a 9-hole regulation course. The course is extremely tight and tee times are only reserved for weekends and holidays. The course is 2,700 yards with a par of 35. Players may also choose to play the double loop 18 making the par for the course 71. The course features a clubhouse with a full bar, pub style meals and a Pro Shop.
Other courses in the area:
Fairfield Country Club | 18-holes
201 North West Ninth St.
Flora Golf & Country Club | 9-holes
121 Golf Course Lane
Lawrence County Country Club | 9-holes
Rt 2, off U.S. Hwy. 50
You don’t have to go to Charlotte, Talladega or Daytona for a great auto race. To get in gear, you need only venture across Southern Illinois, from the burgs of Madison to Highland to Flora.
Of course, ladies can start their engines, too. And they don’t have to be named Danica Patrick. Gateway Motorsports Park provides plenty of opportunities for bona fide racers to neophytes—say, a kindergarten teacher or a British squash team—to get behind the wheel of a race-prepped Camaro. Many corporate team-building getaways are held here. Not including karting, 230 events will be held this year at Gateway, within sight of I-55 and the Gateway Arch in St. Louis.
Curtis Francois is a racer who’s parlayed his time behind the wheel to owner of the radically refurbished track and stands. Much more happens here than cars speeding around a 1¼-mile paved oval.
“The idea is to make it an entertainment,” says Francois, “and sometimes a race breaks out.”
And the karting is in a different league than what you’d find at an amusement park in Branson. These are built in France, not by Sears. You have no idea how fast these rascals go until you see and hear them up close and personal. Neither could you imagine what it’s like to be among as many as 75,000 roaring fans, even on an 80-inch screen. Want to try it yourself? Try “arrive and drive” at the new Kartplex, located within the oval itself.
April starts the season out at most tracks and speedways, whether you’re in the mood for off-road trucks in Baja-style contests, to every other type of racecar competition, officially sanctioned or not. There’s SCCA racing (Sports Car Club of America) and heart-stopping 1/8-mile NHRA (National Hot Rod Association) drag races. You can thrill to a Grand Am or marvel at pre-1972 muscle car “nostalgia” runs.
Gateway only reopened a few years ago and work is still going on to add features so would-be racers can get a feel for all racing surfaces, from the classic oval to an impossibly curvy 1½-mile road course… hold on to your stomach!
Compared to new and ever-improving Gateway, Highland Speedway is not far from collecting Social Security. It opened in 1962… and excitement is building for its 54th season. UMP (United Midwestern Promoters) DIRTcar racing here ranges from Street Stocks to KidModz (12-18).
Did we mention that nearly anyone can get involved with this sport?
The racetrack in Clay County, 2½ miles north of Flora, has been renamed Route 45 Raceway. As many as 3,500 can enjoy all classes of UMP DIRTcar racing on the 1/3-mile high-banked dirt track. And would it be auto racing without sponsors and ads on every square inch of car, uniform or grandstand? This season 480-feet of fence will be festooned with 8-foot billboards.
In Pontoon Beach, just south of I-270, Tri-City Speedway is a 3/8-mile dirt oval (as measured 20- feet from the outside wall). The track features 10 degrees banking in the corners and is 70-feet wide all the way around.
Rather watch drivers bust stuff up? Keep tabs on whether a demolition derby will be scheduled somewhere, probably at Belle-Clair Fairgrounds in Belleville. At this writing, plans for the season there were still being formalized.
Yes, racing is exciting, whether you’re watching or participating. But, as Francois says, you don’t have to white-knuckle yourself around tight turns at a high rate of speed. Just focus on the orange cone at the apex of each curve.
As he points out, with a grin: “Racing is more of a geometry problem than guts and gonads.”
This information originally appeared in the Tourism Times Seasonal Guide. Click here and sign up to receive three issues every year at no cost!
Our 19 county region features 52 golf courses, great for players of all skill levels. The Fall Season is a great time of year for getting out and playing some holes. Many challenges await players all over the territory, as our course designs feature everything from 18-hole championship layouts of 7,000+ yards to par 3, executive style courses. So grab your clubs, make a tee time and hit the links in ILLINOISouth!
Arlington Greens in Granite City is owned and operated by the Collinsville Area Recreation District. This 18-hole course is a par 72, and reaches almost 7,000 yards from the back tees. This facility also has a driving range.
Bent Oak Golf Course in Breese is a great little 9-hole track, and this year, it is celebrating 20 years in operation. This par 36 layout is almost 3,300 yards and features 4 sets of tees.
Mt. Carmel Golf Course is a superb par 71, 18-hole design and is wappred around the city park. This 6,100+ yard layout hosts numerous tournaments, is always in great shape and was opened in the 1940s
Nashville Golf Course is owned and operated by the City of Nashville in Washington County. This 9-hole Muni is par 36 and is 3,200 yards long. This course is located on the edge of the city’s park with a large number of mature trees lining the fairways.
Stonewolf Golf Club in Fairview Heights, a Jack Nicklaus design, is one of the top rated courses on either side of the river year after year. This challenging par 72 layout is spread over 6,943 yards, with multiple sets of tees for all members of your group to enjoy. Be sure to check out Jack’s on the Green restaurant, located in the clubhouse.
This information originally appeared in the Tourism Times Seasonal Guide. Click Here to download and read the issue, or Click Here and sign up to receive three issues every year at no cost!