By Evan Garcia, WTTW
4 May 2020
After shutting down for more than a month, golf is back in Illinois – at some courses, at least.
Illinois’ extended COVID-19 stay-at-home order allowed golf courses to reopen Friday under specific social distancing guidelines.
Those new rules set by the Illinois Department of Commerce include limiting groups to two players only, closing down clubhouses and not allowing gear rentals or golf carts to be used on courses, unless a golfer has a physical disability or limitation.
Tee times must be spread out by 15-minute intervals, about five minutes more than usual at the Glen Club in north suburban Glenview, according to Ethan Roush, the club’s head golf professional.
“Typically, four players would be allowed on the first hole every 10 minutes and that would bring our capacity to about 220 to 240 people out there per day if we were really busy,” Roush said. “So now it’s two people every 15 minutes, which limits our capacity down to about 80 players a day.”
You’ll see even fewer people on Chicago’s public golf courses this month – that’s because the Chicago Park District is opting to keep its courses closed through May.
North of the city, the Skokie Park District reopened its Weber Park Golf Course on Friday. Signs spread throughout the nine-hole course reminded golfers to maintain a distance of at least 6 feet from each other.
Skokie Park District Golf Operations Manager Rich Lee said Chicago golfers are migrating north to play a quick round at Weber Park.
“We do have people from Chicago coming up to play here in Skokie and they enjoy the course here,” Lee said. “Just the interest level because everyone’s been stuck inside – opening day our tee sheet was completely full.”
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