From the crisp green grass beneath one’s shoes to the still cool morning air under a brilliant blue sky, there’s something pretty special about stepping out on Pottawatomie Golf Course in St. Charles. The course is like a small to-do list with each hole presenting obstacles that are checked off at completion before scooping up the ball and walking to the next hole.
For those seeking a challenge, there’s the opportunity to best one’s score from their last visit, or perhaps beat out an opponent in a friendly competition. The course is just long enough to enjoy the walk, and take time to catch up with your fellow players on life in between putts and swings.
As Assistant Golf Manager for the St. Charles Park District’s course Bill Ogiego sees every day how players come together from all walks of life for the opportunity to spend time together and enjoy the game.
“Where else can you go for some recreation with the people you have fun spending time with, while getting in your ‘steps’ for the day and enjoying the beautiful surroundings,” Ogiego said.
While the game is central, it’s just a part of the experience, Ogiego explains.
“When we talk about ‘going golfing’ at Pottawatomie, we talk about four things: camaraderie, exercise, beautiful scenery and then the game of golf,” Ogiego said.
Located in Pottawatomie Park, the nine-hole course is nestled along the Fox River, creating a beautiful setting. The course is a certified Audubon Sanctuary, where native birds as well as those migrating will stop for a rest, finding shade, water and perhaps a meal in the water too.
One of the appeals to golf is the opportunity to welcome players of all ages, from young ones learning with parents and grandparents to those who find the game the perfect excuse for exercise and staying active.
“We have season pass holders as young as 7 years old and those over 90 years old,” Ogiego said.
The park district offers varying levels of passes, including season, weekday and even punch cards that can be used for an individual or a group. The park district aims to keep green fees affordable to residents and non-residents. There are discounts for Twilight Golf and Mondays are Senior Golf Days, where those ages 60 and older can play nine-holes for $15 per person, a great opportunity for singles, couples and even grandparents with their grandchildren.
Ogiego said golf is a great sport for generations to bond. It’s also a great sport to make new friends.
“We have players who were paired up once last year as walk-on singles who are now playing together twice a week,” Ogiego said. “We have husbands and wives who play together, siblings, parents and their children, neighborhood groups and of course our Men’s leagues and Women’s leagues.”
With a nine-hole course, a visit to Pottawatomie can easily fit into one’s schedule leaving plenty of time for the grandchildren to enjoy time in the park or friends to keep the fun going over a post-game meal.
“We have players who have been friends for more than 50 years who come out and still enjoy a game together,” Ogiego said.