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Bay1524
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I forgot to mention Evanston Country Club (in Skokie) and Skokie Country Club (in Glencoe). Both are fine clubs. Evanston has a lot of members from Chicago. Evanston had a membership campaign about a year ago when I was looking around. I ended up going elsewhere because I did not like the course as much and it is a bit too far from my house. Its downstroke is a bit cheaper than the other clubs in the area. The minimum annual dues and food minimum charges are pretty much the same no matter where you go in this area.

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Cubswin lists a good option. I was a member at the Glen Club (Glenview) for a few years. It should probably be described as "semi-private", as members have preferred tee times on most days (including weekends) and the very large practice area has a section that is members-only. I was able to frequently walk on to the first tee and play as a single after range sessions, and it has a sizeable number of good players (single-digit handicap) as members. There are caddies available, on request. The initiation fees were reasonable (about 1/10 that of some private clubs in the area) and monthly dues also reasonable. They played a Nationwide event there for several years, plus other high-level state amateur events, so the Fazio design holds up well. I'd still be a member if I hadn't left town....

Agree that the public options are also fabulous -- many within 30-45 minutes of the Loop.

B

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Best deal in the North suburbs is the No-frills, unlimited membership at Sunset Valley. For under $1500, you can get a regular time on Sat or Sun, plus unlimited play. It isn't anywhere close to as nice as the elite private clubs that border it, but if you are going to play 70+ times, this is an amazing deal. Will give you a year to try having a time in the north shore to see how long your commute is to get here from the city to play. Deerfield GC also has a similar deal. Both courses are right off the highways - so they are relatively easy to get to. Not private...so you dont get that level of service or luxury...but you don't have to deal with putting down a ton of money or being committed. At that price, it leaves you a lot of free cash to go out and play other places when you want and not feel like you have to play more to justify the big money you dropped for initiation or annual minimums.

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[quote name='jming' timestamp='1313013430' post='3471205']
[quote name='Bay1524' timestamp='1313008243' post='3470916']
Thanks for all the responses. I will definitely look into all of these. Would love to hear more suggestions as well.

Is anyone aware of any public courses that have special season passes or practice & play memberships?
[/quote]

There's Conway Farms in Lake Forest. I believe Luke Donald is a member there.
[/quote]

Conway Farms is great for those who don't like having fun on the golf course. Such a shame, because the track is beautiful.

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  • 2 weeks later...

[quote name='Gdane' timestamp='1389988487' post='8479323']
[quote name='jming' timestamp='1313013430' post='3471205']
[quote name='Bay1524' timestamp='1313008243' post='3470916']
Thanks for all the responses. I will definitely look into all of these. Would love to hear more suggestions as well.

Is anyone aware of any public courses that have special season passes or practice & play memberships?
[/quote]

There's Conway Farms in Lake Forest. I believe Luke Donald is a member there.
[/quote]

Conway Farms is great for those who don't like having fun on the golf course. Such a shame, because the track is beautiful.
[/quote]
Can you please elaborate? No fun?

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Conway Farms is a beautiful golf course. But, it is not a public course. It is a relatively new but upscale private club in Lake Forest that some Old Money folks in Lake Forest may look down as new money. It encourages fast golf and the use of caddies. While I am not a member there, but, to me, fast golf on a beautiful and well-conditioned modern course sure sounds like fun.

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[quote name='markjinc' timestamp='1390700339' post='8533017']
[quote name='Gdane' timestamp='1389988487' post='8479323']
[quote name='jming' timestamp='1313013430' post='3471205']
[quote name='Bay1524' timestamp='1313008243' post='3470916']
Thanks for all the responses. I will definitely look into all of these. Would love to hear more suggestions as well.

Is anyone aware of any public courses that have special season passes or practice & play memberships?
[/quote]

There's Conway Farms in Lake Forest. I believe Luke Donald is a member there.
[/quote]

Conway Farms is great for those who don't like having fun on the golf course. Such a shame, because the track is beautiful.
[/quote]
Can you please elaborate? No fun?
[/quote]

For example, there are a select group of members who keep a look out for golfers/people walking around the course with their shirts untucked (among other things). I once watched one of the members commandeer the starters cart and drive down the first hole just to tell another member to tuck in his shirt. Obviously this behavior doesn't exemplify the entire membership, and there are some absolutely great people that belong there, but when I saw it I wasn't shocked. Also, in ten years working there, I can count on two hands the number of times I saw a member with a beer in his hands. You don't have to drink to have fun, especially on a beautiful course like Conway, but that was strange to me.

Conway Farms may be my favorite course in the Chicagoland area, but if I were to join a club it wouldn't be anywhere close to the top of my list.

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  • 2 months later...

[quote name='Gdane' timestamp='1390749081' post='8535791']
[quote name='markjinc' timestamp='1390700339' post='8533017']
[quote name='Gdane' timestamp='1389988487' post='8479323']
[quote name='jming' timestamp='1313013430' post='3471205']
[quote name='Bay1524' timestamp='1313008243' post='3470916']
Thanks for all the responses. I will definitely look into all of these. Would love to hear more suggestions as well.

Is anyone aware of any public courses that have special season passes or practice & play memberships?
[/quote]

There's Conway Farms in Lake Forest. I believe Luke Donald is a member there.
[/quote]

Conway Farms is great for those who don't like having fun on the golf course. Such a shame, because the track is beautiful.
[/quote]
Can you please elaborate? No fun?
[/quote]

For example, there are a select group of members who keep a look out for golfers/people walking around the course with their shirts untucked (among other things). I once watched one of the members commandeer the starters cart and drive down the first hole just to tell another member to tuck in his shirt. Obviously this behavior doesn't exemplify the entire membership, and there are some absolutely great people that belong there, but when I saw it I wasn't shocked. Also, in ten years working there, I can count on two hands the number of times I saw a member with a beer in his hands. You don't have to drink to have fun, especially on a beautiful course like Conway, but that was strange to me.

Conway Farms may be my favorite course in the Chicagoland area, but if I were to join a club it wouldn't be anywhere close to the top of my list.
[/quote]

If you want to join a club on the north shore to drink beer then its Bob O' Link everyday of the week.... all men, no dress code, no behavior code

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  • 2 months later...

If you live near downtown or on the north/northwest side, Ridgemoor CC would likely be the closest. I checked into membership last Spring, and if I recall, the initial drop was ~30K payable across three years I believe. Of course, there are the monthly dues and food and beverage minimums.

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[quote name='Voltron' timestamp='1396450945' post='9002731']
If you want to join a club on the north shore to drink beer then its Bob O' Link everyday of the week.... all men, no dress code, no behavior code
[/quote]

Isn't Ditka a member? Well, that explains it. :taunt:

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Ping G410 5h 26 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 70 Stiff
PXG 0311XP Gen3 6, 0311P Gen3 7-P (2 Deg Weak, 1 Deg Flat) - True Temper Elevate 95 S
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Anyone in Chicago that is overlooking Olympia Fields (especially if you live downtown or in western burbs) is making a huge mistake. I joined their two summers ago and couldn't be happier. The facility has two exceptional golf courses (every bit as good as Medinah or anything else in the Chicago area). The North Course had all bunkers redone in the fall and most of the tee boxes. The remained of the tee boxes will be re-done this fall - as well as the addition of two new bunkers just in time for the 2015 US Am). The condition of the golf courses are phenomenal (and generally put Medinah #3 to shame - due to the amount of "Corporate golf" Medinah tends to get - although I did here the renovation of Medinah #1 is great). The membership is a great mix of new and old with about 60 associate members under the age of 35.

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[quote name='urjc22' timestamp='1404157001' post='9609535']
Anyone in Chicago that is overlooking Olympia Fields (especially if you live downtown or in western burbs) is making a huge mistake. I joined their two summers ago and couldn't be happier. The facility has two exceptional golf courses (every bit as good as Medinah or anything else in the Chicago area). The North Course had all bunkers redone in the fall and most of the tee boxes. The remained of the tee boxes will be re-done this fall - as well as the addition of two new bunkers just in time for the 2015 US Am). The condition of the golf courses are phenomenal (and generally put Medinah #3 to shame - due to the amount of "Corporate golf" Medinah tends to get - although I did here the renovation of Medinah #1 is great). The membership is a great mix of new and old with about 60 associate members under the age of 35.
[/quote]

Certainly can't argue with that, but the OP was looking for courses 20 to 25 minutes from downtown. 'Just no way one can drive the 34 miles from downtown to OF in less than 40 minutes during non-rush hour. Peak travel times are over an hour on a good day.

One could take the Metra Electric out to the course, but the trip back into the city would suck.

Ping G400 Max 10.5 - Fujikura Vista Pro 65 Flex-X 44.5"
TaylorMade AeroBurner Mini Driver 16 - Matrix Speed RUL-Z 60 Stiff
Ping G410 7wd 20.5 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 65 Stiff (43")
Ping G410 9wd 23.5 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 65 Stiff (42.5")
Ping G410 5h 26 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 70 Stiff
PXG 0311XP Gen3 6, 0311P Gen3 7-P (2 Deg Weak, 1 Deg Flat) - True Temper Elevate 95 S
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Actually, the drive down to Olympia is much quicker than almost any of the other privates (except for Beverly, maybe Evanston and maybe Skokie - on a good traffic day). It generally takes me 32 minutes from River North / Aon center in non-rush hour. Weekend morning from Lincoln Park it takes me about 38 minutes and going back in about 45. The traffic going South is generally much better than going west or north. I too was under the impression that it was a far drive before I went and toured the club and talked to members. 50% of our membership comes from the city now and the other large majority is western suburbs where you can get there in about 35 minutes from Hinsdale. The traffic going west and north on the weekends and just about anytime is a nightmare. If you live in the South Loop, even better where 25-27 minutes is common. And as you mention, the train is actually a nice option. We have a few members that don't own cars and train down every saturday and sunday am ($7 for unlimited weekend rides).

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[quote name='urjc22' timestamp='1404162253' post='9610245']
Actually, the drive down to Olympia is much quicker than almost any of the other privates (except for Beverly, maybe Evanston and maybe Skokie - on a good traffic day). It generally takes me 32 minutes from River North / Aon center in non-rush hour. Weekend morning from Lincoln Park it takes me about 38 minutes and going back in about 45. The traffic going South is generally much better than going west or north. I too was under the impression that it was a far drive before I went and toured the club and talked to members. 50% of our membership comes from the city now and the other large majority is western suburbs where you can get there in about 35 minutes from Hinsdale. The traffic going west and north on the weekends and just about anytime is a nightmare. If you live in the South Loop, even better where 25-27 minutes is common. And as you mention, the train is actually a nice option. We have a few members that don't own cars and train down every saturday and sunday am ($7 for unlimited weekend rides).
[/quote]

I played Skokie on Friday and my host said that he often heard that the best country club is the one closest to your house. Can't say I disagree. Don't understand why anyone would want to join a club that was more than a 5 or 10 minute drive from your front door. If I joined a club the goal would be to be there 4-6 days a week either playing or practicing. Otherwise I don't see how it would be worth it.

And what if you get into a casual game and there's drinking? As my host said the other day, he lives a mile away from the club and he's walked home on a couple occasions.

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[quote name='zer0' timestamp='1404165430' post='9610687']
[quote name='urjc22' timestamp='1404162253' post='9610245']
Actually, the drive down to Olympia is much quicker than almost any of the other privates (except for Beverly, maybe Evanston and maybe Skokie - on a good traffic day). It generally takes me 32 minutes from River North / Aon center in non-rush hour. Weekend morning from Lincoln Park it takes me about 38 minutes and going back in about 45. The traffic going South is generally much better than going west or north. I too was under the impression that it was a far drive before I went and toured the club and talked to members. 50% of our membership comes from the city now and the other large majority is western suburbs where you can get there in about 35 minutes from Hinsdale. The traffic going west and north on the weekends and just about anytime is a nightmare. If you live in the South Loop, even better where 25-27 minutes is common. And as you mention, the train is actually a nice option. We have a few members that don't own cars and train down every saturday and sunday am ($7 for unlimited weekend rides).
[/quote]

I played Skokie on Friday and my host said that he often heard that the best country club is the one closest to your house. Can't say I disagree. Don't understand why anyone would want to join a club that was more than a 5 or 10 minute drive from your front door. If I joined a club the goal would be to be there 4-6 days a week either playing or practicing. Otherwise I don't see how it would be worth it.

And what if you get into a casual game and there's drinking? As my host said the other day, he lives a mile away from the club and he's walked home on a couple occasions.
[/quote]

I think that's the key. I certainly wouldn't spend top dollar for a membership at a place I couldn't reasonably use during the week. I know a few folks in the finance industry that can get out of work by 3:15 pm, which makes it somewhat doable. However, during the week, there's no way to get anywhere in the burbs in a reasonable amount of time from downtown.

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Ping G410 9wd 23.5 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 65 Stiff (42.5")
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  • 3 months later...
  • 3 months later...

anyone have any good info for the 2015 season. I am looking to join a club I live downtown. Basically looking for a good deal for associate membership under 40 where I can get a feel for a club before becoming a full memeber. Living downtown looking for soemthing pretty close. any info would be appreciated.

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[quote name='Shradersr' timestamp='1423498078' post='10917171']
anyone have any good info for the 2015 season. I am looking to join a club I live downtown. Basically looking for a good deal for associate membership under 40 where I can get a feel for a club before becoming a full memeber. Living downtown looking for soemthing pretty close. any info would be appreciated.
[/quote]

I don't know how much they run, but if you're downtown and are willing to head out to the south suburbs, there are a number in that area. Idlewild, Flossmore and Olympia Fields are all right next to each other and some have, from what I'm told, pretty good rates; they kind of compete with each other a bit. Don't know if Olympia is one of them, but I've definitely heard that about Flossmore. Midlothian had some pretty good rates as well IIRC.

Unfortunately there really aren't many good options living in the city. Beverly is in the city but it's south and I don't know the rates, Ridge is also nearby and I don't know rates there either. Riverside Country Club is just a bit west of the city, and again I don't know rates. Make some calls and put some feelers out there, I'm sure there are some clubs a little more eager than others to add new members.

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[quote name='Shradersr' timestamp='1423498078' post='10917171']
anyone have any good info for the 2015 season. I am looking to join a club I live downtown. Basically looking for a good deal for associate membership under 40 where I can get a feel for a club before becoming a full memeber. Living downtown looking for soemthing pretty close. any info would be appreciated.
[/quote]

Ridgemoor CC would be the closet club if you live downtown. I don't have current rate information, but they were very happy to provide me with the information when I called them two years ago.

Ping G400 Max 10.5 - Fujikura Vista Pro 65 Flex-X 44.5"
TaylorMade AeroBurner Mini Driver 16 - Matrix Speed RUL-Z 60 Stiff
Ping G410 7wd 20.5 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 65 Stiff (43")
Ping G410 9wd 23.5 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 65 Stiff (42.5")
Ping G410 5h 26 (0 Flat) - Alta CB 70 Stiff
PXG 0311XP Gen3 6, 0311P Gen3 7-P (2 Deg Weak, 1 Deg Flat) - True Temper Elevate 95 S
Ping Glide 3.0 52-12 SS, 56-10 Eye2, and 60-10 SS Orange Dot (2 Deg Flat) - Ping Z-Z115 Wedge
PXG Blackjack 36" - SuperStroker Flatso 2.0

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