Golf Course Overview: Rend Lake Golf Resort
Insights From An Insider With Brian Laur, PGA Golf Professional
By Brian Weis
Local and traveling golfers love to research course before playing, whether it is to gain some local knowledge or to set the expectation for their experience. Below is an interview with Brian Laur who shares some valuable insight about the property, its most talked about holes and the signature dish/drink to consume at the 19th hole.
How Does Your Course Differ From The Others In The Area?
With our hotel on-site and 27 holes we are unique to southern Illinois. The course is fairly open but does have hundreds of mature trees if a golfer hits their ball far enough off line. With some of the largest greens anywhere, Rend Lake gives everyone the feeling that they are hitting the ball straighter than normal, only to get up to your ball and realize a 70 foot putt is upcoming!
For someone who has not played the course in awhile, has there been any new changes/renovations to the course or property?
The condition of the course is the main thing that people who have come back to Rend Lake after being gone for a while have commented on. The greens are in excellent shape and are a good speed considering many putts could have ten feet of break or more.
What is your course's answer to Amen Corner? (Describe your best/hardest 3 back/back/back holes)
The 3 starting holes on the West Course(#19-#21) would probably be regarded as the most difficult 3 holes in a row. Depending on the tees you are playing the length of these three make them very difficult. #19(originally #10 as this was the back nine until 1994) is a good dogleg right that most golfers would be best to leave their tee shots slightly left. The left side of the fairway slopes right to put you in perfect position and most golfers would be blocked out by large, mature trees if hitting into the right side of the fairway. An uphill second makes it difficult to judge. #20 is a long par 5 with trees overhanging in an area that most would lay up for their third shot. This hole plays longer than any other 5 Par on the course. #21 is unusually straight for Rend Lake but plays well over 450 yards from the back tee, especially with a back pin location. An old oak tree looms on the left side of the fairway @ 150 yards out which can play havoc with even the best tee shots. The green is the largest of all 27 holes and hitting the green in two definitely does not guarantee a par. If you play these three holes well, the back nine can definitely be a lot of fun. Within that same nine holes golfers get to see beautiful views of the actual lake. Holes 23-25 provide these views. #23 is a short 5 par with a view of Rend Lake off in the distance behind the green. Holes 24 and 25 are both par 4's with lay up options off the tee. Water is in play on each tee shot and the lake runs down the left side of #25 providing the golfer with the best view of the water.
What is your course's claim to fame, or is there a little known fact that golfers should know about the property?
We are owned by a water district, the Rend Lake Conservancy District, that provides water to over 80 communities throughout southern Illinois. Our "Golf Ball Water Tower" has been highlighted in magazines for its uniqueness and anyone who has driven on Interstate 57 (the main interstate to Chicago) has seen the huge golf ball on a tee that has become our trademark.
What tournaments/events have you (recently) hosted or will be hosting?
We just found out that we will again have the honor of hosting the Gateway PGA Southern Illinois Open. This is a major event in the Gateway Section and golfers from outside the area love the opportunity to come in and play a 27 hole event for cash. We have included many new scrambles and tournaments over the last year and are in the planning stages to add even more events this coming year. One popular event from last year is the Coors Light 4 person scramble held on the Saturday before Mother's Day. Another event that we plan to do at least twice this coming year is a 2 person 27 hole scramble. For $50 per person you get to play 27 holes w/cart, lunch provided by Birdies Sports Grille, 2 drink tickets and many prizes and tee gifts. This past year giveaways were provided by Koerner Distributing and Pheasant Hollow Winery.
Besides golf, what other amenities do you offer if a golfer wants to spend most of the day at your facility?
Birdies Sports Grille has numerous televisions for viewing sports and can be described as a mini Buffalo Wild Wings. There is another separated section to the restaurant for a more low key atmosphere. There are bike trails within walking distance of Seasons Lodge on site and numerous outdoor activities with over 18,000 square miles around Rend Lake itself.
Rend Lake Golf Resort
12476 Golf Course Road
Whittington, IL, 62897
Revised: 03/03/2015 - Article Viewed 20,216 Times
Written By: Brian Weis
Brian Weis is the Publisher of GolfTrips.com, a network of golf travel and directory sites including GolfWisconsin.com, GolfMichigan.com, ArizonaGolfer.com, GolfAlabama.com, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.
All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched GolfWisconsin.com. In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and GolfTrips.com was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like GolfTrips.com, GolfGuide.com and GolfPackages.com. It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.
On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.
Contact Brian Weis:
GolfTrips.com - Publisher and Golf Traveler