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DeKalb Golf Courses Scheduled to Reopen

Tue April 28, 2020

DeKalb, IL- On April 23, 2020, Governor Pritzker announced an extension of the Illinois stay-at-home order until May 30th, however, there were some major modifications when it comes to outdoor recreation.

Besides the announcement that state parks would be reopening with restrictions as of May 1st, public health professionals determined that golf is a safe, physical distancing activity and that Illinois golf courses could reopen if a set of strict guidelines are followed.

This is big news for both DeKalb Park District golf courses and the much-needed recreational relief that the community needs at this time. River Heights Golf Course, located at 1020 Sharon Drive, and Buena Vista Golf Course, located 131 Buena Vista Drive, both of which are scheduled to reopen to the public effective May 1st. The putting greens and practice range will remain closed.

“We are pleased to announce that golf operations will commence soon at Buena Vista and River Heights,” stated Park Board President, Phil Young. “We hope that this will mark the beginning of a return to many outdoor recreational programs and activities, which are the hallmark of what the Dekalb Park District does so well.”

In addition to the general social distancing standards outlined in the stay-at-home order, golfers need to abide by many controls, including booking tee times online or by phone only. Only privately-owned pull carts may be utilized, as rental of pull carts will not be allowed. No golf carts are permitted on the courses, with the exception to accommodate individuals with a physical disability or physical limitations that prevent them from walking the course. Those individuals may rent a cart that has undergone rigorous cleaning before and after use, but only that individual may ride in the cart or place their clubs and personal belongings in that cart.

“We couldn’t be more excited to kick off the season this Friday. The safety protocols put in place will enable safe play and hopefully be the start of the many outdoor activities within the District. We look forward to seeing you throughout the year,” stated Superintendent of Golf Operations, Steve Moore.

The Clubhouse, Pro Shop, and beverage carts will be closed; however, River Heights Golf Course will have carry-out alcohol available for purchase and consumption on course, during select times.   

There will also be a set of player restrictions and protocols such as only groups of twosomes and no caddies- all golfers must walk and carry their clubs. Players will be required to bring their clubs and supply of balls, tees, ball markers, and any other equipment needed to play golf.

“Activities in open spaces, with proper social distancing, can help bring some level of comfort, familiarity, and encouragement in these stressful times. We continue to work with state and local agencies on best practices as we offer these programs, while at the same time doing everything, we can to safeguard all who visit our District's parks and facilities,” Young commented further.  

We have been granted the opportunity to open our courses and prove our ability to operate and play them safely, so residents must follow these guidelines so we may continue to enjoy this amenity. A full list of these guidelines and protocols are available for review at, as well as for instructions on how to book tee times, pay, and check-in at either course.

For more DeKalb Park District updates, please visit or You can also sign up for the DeKalb Park District’s ‘Golf DeKalb’ e-newsletter for regular golf updates, announcements, and deals.