Glenwoodie Golf Course and the village of Glenwood, Illinois – both set in the picturesque area of southern
Cook County Illinois – have a long, rich history of serving their residents with: quality golf, a friendly
comfortable place to call home, (in beautiful natural surroundings), forward thinking leadership – promoting an
aggressive business atmosphere, and, all the while still holding onto those small-town family values that
many of us still remember. With the recent improvements in town, and the building of a new modern
clubhouse at Glenwoodie GC, the community seems braced to continue to combine the best of the old (with)
the best of the new.
Glenwood, IL – A Brief History
Glenwood Illinois was founded in 1846, primarily by settlers Job Campbell & O.R. Axtell, and originally named “Hickory Bend” – (most probably for the abundance of hickory trees in the area). With the growth of the railroad, and a stop nearby, the area attracted more settlers – and by 1871, with a population of approximately (500), formed a small local government, and renamed the community “Glenwood.”
One of the earliest additions to this new town was the establishment of the Glenwood School for Boys. Founded, in large part, by Robert Todd Lincoln – (son of President Abraham Lincoln) – in 1887. This school (now known as “Glenwood Academy”) has provided the young – (now) boys & girls – of this area with the opportunity to receive a high-quality education, as well as, valuable life lessons for all who have been a part of its now (125+) years.
In 1903, the “village of Glenwood” officially incorporated, continued to attract citizens and merchants of all kinds – including the opening Jurgensen’s General Store – (now home to the well known “Gabe’s” Restaurant; another restaurant (since 1925) – now known (for the past 39 years) as the outstanding “Glenwood Oaks” Restaurant – and, in (1926) the village welcomed the Glenwoodie Golf Course.
Glenwoodie Golf Course
Opened in 1926, Glenwoodie GC was designed by Harry Collis, an Englishman best known for his re-design and construction of the nearby Flossmoor CC in Homewood Illinois. The longtime Flossmoor CC golf professional and superintendent used his innovative golf skills and talents to build Glenwoodie GC as an exclusive, private, country club. The poor economy of the depression years soon followed, causing a stalling of both completion, and operations at the club, until the facility was purchased by the Archdiocese of Chicago (who) in turn leased out the completed course to a number of financial concerns, and ultimately to (in approx. 1970) the legendary Jemsek family of Cog Hill Golf Course fame. The Jemsek’s ran Glenwoodie for the better part of (3) decades, until (in 1995) the village of Glenwood purchased the course.
Glenwoodie – 2013
Today Glenwoodie GC is a wonderfully conditioned, (thanks in no small part to Superintendent Eric Swanson & his staff), (18) hole golf course – with mature oak trees lining almost every fairway, (3) strategically placed ponds, well positioned & maintained greenside and fairway bunkering, a section of Deer Creek accenting a few holes, (and) all serving to create a definite “park-like” beauty throughout the golf course.
The primarily bent grass fairways and rolling greens offer quite a challenge from the back tees – but with the recent addition of (11) new tees – (now allowing for (4) full sets of teeing grounds) – and providing a 5,300 yd -to- 6,900 yd option to its players – the course allows all levels of golfers to enjoy the “challenge” that best suits their game.
Glenwoodie GC, (well known for its friendly and knowledgeable professional staff – headed by Director of Golf Phil Robbins, and ably assisted by golf professionals Nicole Petreust & Luke Marthaler) offers (7) day -and- weekday season passes; creative and varied league programs for ladies, couples, etc; golf classes for all skill levels, various clinics, (and) all with a well-organized event schedule, that should fit most all players active lifestyles.
Additionally, Glenwoodie GC offers a unique “Loyalty Reward Card” program, a Sunday “Players Club,” Senior discounts, excellent outing packages, twilight rates starting at 1:00PM on weekdays!, super twilight rates after 5:00PM, replay rates, an on-course beverage cart, new electric carts w/ windshields & G.P.S., a lighted driving range open (7) days a week (not closing until 10:00PM during the summer months) with “Range-only” memberships available, an incredible (1/2) acre putting green!, on-course Marshalls ensuring a quality pace of play, pull carts, cart paths throughout, is home to the terrific “1st Tee” program of greater Chicago, and all this contained within an extremely reasonable fee structure!
The beautifully constructed and designed new (2 year old) clubhouse at Glenwoodie GC also has a lot to offer. Contained within this fully modern clubhouse you will find the golf shop – stocked with the finest quality equipment and apparel; an equally well-designed grill room – seating up to 60 – (with room for an additional dozen or so at the bar – serving great sandwiches, etc.) -and- surrounding you with (6) new flat screens, (all) overlooking the spacious and comfortable deck area.
The balance of the clubhouse – (also professionally run) – by General Manager/Executive Chef Tim Donohoe & Banquet Manager Marianne Harmon – houses the more than 8,000 sq ft banquet room(s). Perfect for golf outings, weddings, events, etc. It offers great views of the golf course and natural surroundings. The highly experienced staff can help you plan (and) execute any event you may be planning from beginning to end with all manner of the finest food & beverage options – as well as ensuring a high-quality experience at the site – and an equally enjoyable set of memories when you head home.
The current 9,000 residents of Glenwood, Illinois pack quite a punch into this small (2.5 sq mile) community. Lead by village President (Mayor) Kelly Durkin, the citizens & civic leaders of Glenwood have a long history to be proud of, and a future that looks bright. (And) with the new modern clubhouse & golf course improvements at Glenwoodie GC – a golf facility that still remains young at 87!
For further information about Glenwoodie GC, call the course at (708)758-1212 -or- visit their website at www.glenwoodiegolf.com. The address is 19301 State Street, Glenwood, IL 60425 – the golf course is located approx. (25) minutes south of Chicago, IL (2+) miles west of I-394 using Glenwood-Dyer Road – until it intersects with Main Street – just follow the signs (it’s easy).
Well we made it! It’s finally March again, and although the weather is not yet perfect, with the days getting longer, we know the golf season will be in full swing sooner than later. Many courses that stayed opened reported some very active turnouts on the nicer days – not as strong as last Winter – but better than many of the locked-in Winter seasons of the past. So, now that most golf courses in our area are knocking off the cobwebs, go on out and enjoy. Most practice areas are also opening, so at least get out and putt, chip, and hit a few balls. Be ready for those 1st truly nice days (and) take advantage of the early Spring rates – look for “Demo Days” in our area to evaluate your equipment – and take a few lessons! We are truly quite fortunate to have some of the finest golf instructors in the country right here in our area – and playing better golf really makes the game more enjoyable!
All the tours have started out with a bang – aided by exciting wins by up & coming players – wins by Tiger & Phil on the PGA Tour, the continuation of the excitement that (15) year old Lydia Ko is bringing to the women’s game, and the 1st victory (in his 1st start) by our buddy Rocco Mediate on the Champions Tour.
And congratulations to partners Gregg Tengerstom & Joseph Copeland on another successful Tinley Park golf Expo. In only its second year, the show was able to draw (6,000) golfers and included over (90) exhibits. Nice Job!
Noticed a lot of good work being done at many of the courses in our area in the “off-season” including Ravisloe CC in Homewood, IL; the new and improved Square Links in Frankfort, IL; the course at Aberdeen in Valparaiso, IN; the Lansing Country Club in Lansing, IL – and many others.
Good luck to all the boys high school golf teams this season – a lot of fine young players appear ready to have outstanding years.
Further - Congrats to our friends at WJOB1230AM radio station in Hammond, Indiana, on celebrating (90) years on the air! You truly are “The Voice Of The Region.”
And speaking of WJOB, this year I will be appearing as a guest on “The Back Room” radio show starring “Larry The K” and “Big George.” I will be on their show the (3rd) Thursday of every month at approx. 7:00PM – to discuss local golf goings on & GIVING AWAY a few rounds of golf to some of our fine local courses. For a CHANCE TO WIN - or just to listen in – tune in to WJOB1230AM –or- log on to www.wjob1230am.com to view the show. The call-in number is (219)845-1100 – Good Luck!
Special thanks this month: To Glenwoodie GC Director of Golf Phil Robbins, ass’t professionals Nicole Petreust & Luke Marthaler, Glenwoodie General Manager Tim Donohoe & Banquet Manager Marianne Harmon, golf course Superintendent Eric Swanson, longtime Glenwoodie employee and all-around good guy Don Gruca, the very helpful ladies at the Glenwood Village Hall – including: Ashleigh, Leslie, Merry, Connie, and Linda; my friends at the Glenwood-Lynnwood Library: Ivana & Rhonda, and my new buddies Terry Jarosky, Jeannie, and Jaime at the famous Glenwood Oak Restaurant.
And as always, I appreciate any comments, suggestions, questions, stories, etc. Please contact me at our e-mail address: email@example.com or leave me a voicemail at (219)947-4313. And to read past golf course reviews – or to just visit Golf Plus newspaper online – visit our website at www.golfplusonline.net.
Last shot: In this, the 21st season that Golf Plus has been bringing the golfers of our area the latest info on local golf news, golf course highlights, and tournament scores, etc. New features are being added in (2013) – including more contests, monthly golf tips from local golf professionals, (and) some new bio’s covering the rich history of some of the outstanding players, events, “characters”, and golf facilities that have helped shape our golfing past – and, most assuredly, a few surprises! See you next month!