2018-2022: New Places to Play – Sportsman’s Country Club

Logo - New Places to Play


The following information provides an update regarding the Northbrook Park District’s 2018-2022: New Places to Play initiative. In addition to developing a new Activity Center at Techny Prairie Park and Fields, the New Places to Play initiative addresses significant improvements at Sportsman’s Country Club.

Project Overview at Sportsman’s Country Club

The project will include major renovations at Sportsman’s including:

  • New clubhouse with improved year-round dining experience
  • Rebuilt Classic 18 greens
  • New forward tee boxes
  • Re-grassed fairways and East 9 greens
  • East 9 irrigation improvements
  • Practice Range enhancements

Click here for further details on this project.

Photo - Board Groundbreaking - new clubhouse site 6-18-2020
Board groundbreaking at clubhouse site June 2020

Click here to view photos from the project.

Sportsman’s is closed for the 2020 season with a scheduled reopening in the summer of 2021. Reciprocal agreements were finalized with area courses so golfers can continue to play the game they love. Northbrook Park District residents will be given resident rates by the Park District of Highland Park, Glenview Park District and Wheeling Park District during the closure.

Northbrook Park District Board of Commissioners have allocated $12.5 million for this project. Course and range improvements will be done by Libertyville-based Jacobson Golf Course Design Inc. The District has hired RATIO Architects of Chicago to design the clubhouse, with Gewalt Hamilton Associates Inc. of Vernon Hills overseeing the civil engineering services for the project.

Status Updates

New clubhouse concrete foundation July 2020
New clubhouse concrete foundation July 2020

August 5, 2020

  • Completed drainage and greens mix installation on the Classic 18.
  • Grow in of new 007 bent grass seed for tees, fairways and greens has begun on 6 holes of the East 9.
  • Prepping of existing tees and fairways for seeding is in process.
  • Fairway fill and contouring to improve drainage continues on Classic 18 holes 1, 13, 15, 18 and East 9 holes 1, 2, 9.
  • Pond expansion and vegetation installation between Classic 18 holes 3 and 16 is complete.
  • Pond excavation between East 9 holes 1 and 2 has been completed.
  • Driving Range excavation and new target shaping is ongoing as excavation material is generated.
  • Clubhouse concrete foundation is 90% complete.
  • Range Service building excavation is complete.
  • Entrance drive bio swales have been shaped out.
  • Sanitary and water main lines to the clubhouse is complete.

July 8, 2020

Photo - Sportsman's Course Renovations - Green cored out
Sportsman’s cored out green June 2020
  • Classic 18 greens have been cored out. Greens contouring, drainage installation and irrigation adjustments are in process.
  • In preparation for seeding the Classic 18 greens for holes 1, 2, 3, 7, 16 have been filled with 10” of sand. The sand has been laboratory tested to verify it meets the design specification.
  • All existing tee boxes have been stripped. Tee boxes are being leveled and a sand cap is being installed in preparation for seeding.
  • On course drainage line improvements are nearing completion. Pond expansion between hole 3 and 16 has been completed.
  • East 9 irrigation system improvements are near completion. Irrigation system has been loaded in preparation for new grass to grow in.
  • 60 new trees were planted in June. Over 100 of the project total of 200 have been installed.
  • Stripping of topsoil at the Range has begun.
  • New entrance drive pond excavation has been completed.
  • Clubhouse building pad has been completed. New clubhouse floor is 5’ higher than previous clubhouse.


June 10, 2020

Photo - Sportsman's fairway on Hole 15 getting raised with fill material
Sportsman’s fairway on Hole 15 getting raised with fill material
  • Golf Course renovation improvements began in earnest on Thursday, May 21
  • Construction of the new forward tees has begun
  • Demolition of the parking lot, roadway and range tee is underway
  • Irrigation heads have been removed from the East 9 irrigation system and the contractor is installing the new isolation valves and wiring
  • 45 new trees have been planted
  • Staff will be planting 60 more this week with a project total of 200 when finished


Photo - Sportsman's tree protection fencing
Sportsman’s course tree protection fencing installed May 2020

May 15, 2020

  • Demolition of the cart barn, clubhouse, range building and two starter buildings is complete
  • Installation of the construction fence and tree protection fencing is complete
  • Construction materials are being reviewed and ordered
  • Waiting for final permitting to begin



Photo - SCC Demolition 4-2020
Sportsman’s Country Club Clubhouse removed and ground leveled 4-2020

April 16, 2020

  • Demolition of the clubhouse, cart barn and range support building is complete
  • Clubhouse site clearing is complete
  • Bids for the new clubhouse have been received
  • Lab testing of the new greens sand is complete
  • Course and range construction will begin as soon as permits are approved
    • Work on the course is anticipated to begin in early May


Photo - SCC Clubhouse basement demolition 3-2020
Sportsman’s Country Club Clubhouse basement demolition 3-2020

March 30, 2020

  • The cart barn has been removed and backfilling with stone and soil is complete
  • The Clubhouse building and foundation have been removed and they have begun backfilling with soil
  • Range building demolition will begin next week, weather permitting
Sportsman's Country Club Clubhouse Demolition 3-16-2020
Sportsman’s Country Club Clubhouse Demolition 3-16-2020






March 17, 2020

  • Demolition of the cart barn is nearly complete
  • Demolition of the clubhouse has begun
  • Site preparations continue
  • Clubhouse construction bids are due March 24, 2020 at 2pm
  • Civil and golf course construction bids to be awarded at the March 25, 2020 Board meeting


February 28, 2020

  • Demolition permit was obtained and facilities prepared for take down
  • Civil and golf course construction bid packets were received
  • Staff members continued to work with clubhouse architects to complete construction documents for bid package
  • Golf staff finalized purchase agreement for Full Swing Golf simulators


January 13, 2020

  • Utilities are currently being disconnected in anticipation of demolition work.
  • Demolition work will begin no sooner than February 3.
  • The bid process for civil engineering and for the golf course renovations will begin with bid packet posting tentatively set for late January 2020.
  • The bid process for the clubhouse construction project will begin with bid packet posting tentatively set for early March 2020.


Photos - Sportsman's Staff at Project Open House 12-19
Sportsman’s Project Open House – December 14, 2019

December 15, 2019: Project Open House

On Saturday, December 14 the public was invited to celebrate the history and future of Sportsman’s Country Club. Over 450 people attended the Open House where they met the project team, viewed project renderings and entered contests and raffles. The history of Sportsman’s was celebrated with a historic timeline and displays of photos. Sportsman’s Country Club is now closed for golf course renovations and new clubhouse construction.


October 9, 2019: Project Planning Continues & Reciprocal Golf Agreements Finalized

  • Staff members continue to work with the golf course consultant, civil engineers, and building architects to bring site plans to the Park Board of Commissioners for review and discussion on a monthly basis. Drawings will be shared on this website as they become available.
  • As with any year, the closing date of the course for the season is weather dependent. The course will be kept open for as long as possible, while staff members assess weather conditions to ensure the protection of the course. Closing date information will be shared one week prior to closing.
  • Golf staff members have been working diligently with several area courses so that our golfers can continue to play in our area during the closure. Northbrook Park District residents will be given resident discount rates at the following courses beginning Spring 2020.
    • Park District of Highland Park, Sunset Valley Golf Club
    • Glenview Park District, Glenview Park Golf Club & Glenview Prairie Club
    • Wheeling Park District, Traditions at Chevy Chase Golf Course


July 16, 2019:  Plans Move Forward

Since January, due diligence revealed that exploring the viability of this public/private partnership with KDD, LLC was of value. However, the Board determined it was not in the best interest of the Northbrook Park District to proceed with the partnership discussions. Through research and ongoing dialogue with stakeholders, the Board of Commissioners and the Golf Project Team have gained valuable insight regarding this important community project. We are dedicated to our goal of enhancing the overall golf experience at Sportsman’s and becoming a desired destination for the entire community. In that spirit, the Northbrook Park District has re-engaged Rick Jacobson, President, Jacobson Golf Course Design Inc., of Libertyville for improvements at both golf courses and the practice range at Sportsman’s Country Club. Rick worked with the Park District in 2004 on the Anetsberger Golf Course remodel and was the course architect for the 2005 renovations at Sportsman’s Country Club.

Work is slated to begin on the project in late 2019. Sportsman’s will close after the 2019 season and re-open in 2021. During the closure, Northbrook Park District residents will receive resident rates at Park District of Highland Park’s Sunset Valley Golf Club. Additional agreements with other nearby communities also may be pursued.


January 23, 2019: Park District explores public/private partnership.

At the end of 2018, the District issued a Request for Proposals to broaden the original project scope. It included more innovative golf amenities and a clubhouse with a year-round restaurant for the benefit of golfers and non-golfers alike. In recent weeks, our Board, SLT and golf staff reviewed an incredible proposal from a local firm, KDD LLC., that we believe can deliver on our vision. The Board directed staff to pursue a public/private partnership with them and we are currently in contract negotiations. We anticipate having more details to share in the coming weeks and hope to begin the Design Phase this Spring.


November 7, 2018: Park District announces Sportsman’s will be open entire 2019 season.

In 2018, the Northbrook Park District launched 2018-2022: New Places to Play — a capital improvement initiative that will include improvements to the golf courses, practice facilities and clubhouse at Sportsman’s Country Club. This project, in addition to the new Activity Center at Techny Prairie Park and Fields, was selected in response to community feedback regarding our programming and facilities.

In May, we partnered with a highly skilled design team to develop a master plan for Sportsman’s. The preliminary plan was presented to the Board of Commissioners in September. Through the planning process, we gained valuable insight which called for further exploration of this important community project. We are dedicated to our goal of enhancing the overall golf experience at Sportsman’s and to becoming a desired destination for the entire community. In that spirit, we intend to investigate partnership opportunities to leverage available and interested community resources to expand the scope of the project.

A Request for Proposal has been issued to broaden the project to include more innovative golf amenities and a clubhouse with a year-round restaurant for the benefit of golfers and non-golfers alike. We are happy to announce that with this new development we will be open for golf for the entire 2019 season.

Project Photo Gallery