Planning can be a pain, especially for an undertaking as big as a sport event or tournament. Happily, there are destinations that work hard to make sure the whole process isn’t just easy, but fun for all.
Effingham is a growing, tourism-drawing presence in Central Illinois. You’ll find a number of hospitable facilities looking to make your athletic experience extraordinary. With Effingham committed to giving visitors more reasons to stay and giving residents more points of pride in their town, the facilities only continue to grow and improve for players, coaches, refs and fans alike.
Notable Recent/Upcoming Events
- Crossroads Classic Volleyball Tournament
- Effingham SIBC Girls Basketball Tournament
- ACBL Regional Bridge Tournament
- Ham City Jam SLS Skate Competition
- Junior District Swim Meet
CVB/Sports Commissions Services Offered
- Volunteer Staff
- PR/Media Assistance
- Site Visits
- Transportation Assistance
- Lodging Services
- Grant Programs
- Welcome Bags/Gifts
- Itinerary Development
- Event Planning Assistance
Click on tab to see more information about a specific facility
- Richard E. Workman Sports and Wellness Complex
- Hendelmeyer Park
- Evergreen Hollow Park
- Community Park
- Mid America Motorworks
- Thelma Keller Convention Center
Richard E. Workman Sports and Wellness Complex
Richard E. Workman Sports and Wellness Complex was completed in early 2016. The complex offers a 25-meter, eight-lane swimming pool and indoor, 15,500-square-foot, multi-sport courts. This recreational center offers other amenities too, ranging from rentable party rooms to physical therapy services. The complex will not only offer visiting teams great places to play, but a stellar spot for helping their bodies relax and recuperate from intense activity.
Sports: All indoor sports
If you’re looking for outdoor sports, look no further than Hendelmeyer Park. This spot is a charming local park with expansive outdoor fields. At a respectable 20 acres, the park holds two lighted, slow-pitch diamonds and one lighted, fast-pitch diamond—all with natural grass—plus four lighted tennis courts. That’s not even touching upon the more leisurely park features, such as the playground areas, a gazebo, concession stand and skate park. With plenty to enjoy on and off the field, sports planners should be warned that their athletes might not want to leave this idyllic neighborhood refuge.
Sports: Baseball, softball, tennis
Evergreen Hollow Park
Evergreen Hollow Park, located in Northwest Effingham in the Effingham Park District, spans 42 acres and comprises two lighted softball diamonds, one lighted baseball diamond, four lighted tennis courts and soccer fields. On the west side of the park sits Kluthe Memorial Pool, an outdoor swimming pool with a lap pool, water slide and children’s pool area. Additionally, the park features two large pavilions, two playground areas, restrooms, two concession stands and a tree walk—a nature trail with 120 trees representing at least 75 different species.
Sports: Softball, baseball, tennis, soccer, swimming
Community Park is situated on 35 acres in Effingham Park District and features four lighted baseball/softball diamonds, one unlighted baseball/softball diamond, an 18-hole disc golf course that winds through hills and trees, four lighted tennis courts, a roller hockey rink and an outdoor ice skating rink. Other amenities include a sand volleyball court, three outdoor basketball courts, two concession stands, three playground areas, two restrooms, and four pavilions, shelters and picnic areas.
Sports: Baseball, softball, disc golf, tennis, roller hockey, ice skating
Mid America Motorworks
Rev up your engines at Mid America Motorworks, Effingham’s premier racing venue for over 20 years. Here, drivers can race their best vehicles or get the parts they need to go a little faster. Besides its riveting racing events, thousands of visitors come out to the annual Corvette Fest and Funfest for Cooled VW. Effingham transforms its natural grasslands into festival grounds featuring the FunFest Amphitheater stage and the MY Garage Museum and Retail Store. Visitor tents equipped with dozens of board games and food tastings cover the grounds. Show off your vintage Volkswagens and Corvettes while mingling with auto enthusiasts and partying with music’s biggest stars.
Sports: Auto racing
Thelma Keller Convention Center
Effingham’s Thelma Keller Convention Center, named after a dedicated neighborhood resident, provides tons of space for tournament planners who are organizing indoor sports competitions. Known as one of the largest meeting venues in Central Illinois, this convention center covers more than 20,000-square-feet of exhibit space that can host groups of 10-1,500 people. Celebrate your achievements in the separate 10,500-square-foot Grand Ballroom, which can be configured into several rooms. The center’s team will work with you to create affordable packages that come with complimentary parking, dining services and audio-visual equipment.
Things to do in Effingham
This small town in the heart of Illinois offers plenty of ways to dine, explore and relax. Treat the team to a delicious meal from the Firefly Grill, where you will feast on fresh produce cooked to perfection. With menu items ranging from premium steaks to lobster tail to veggie burgers, this eatery caters to every type of eater and provides large rooms for group outings. Balance your diet by exercising at the Richard E. Workman Sports & Wellness Center. Visitors can utilize the fitness gym’s training rooms and courts for team sports or cool off with a few laps in the aquatic center’s two pools. One of the facility’s most popular family-friendly amenities is its lazy river.
The Ballard Nature Center is another great option for exercise and relaxation. This attraction offers winding trails, a children’s fishing pond and picnic sites, perfect for spending the day. On especially hot days, the Kluthe Memorial Pool provides fun slides and fountains at affordable admissions prices. You can even host parties or picnics at any of the pool’s nearby pavilions. Learn more about the small town’s rich history at the Effingham County Cultural Museum. Inside, visitors will discover World War II artifacts, including court records and newspaper articles. You will also find out about Abraham Lincoln’s ties to Effingham and the construction of the “national road” to the Appalachian Mountains’ forests.
I would say that the advantage for choosing Effingham, besides being so centrally located, is the community really gets behind and supports the events. We have such a variety of restaurants and hotels for people to choose from, and our shopping choices continue to expand. I feel fortunate to be able to host the event for its businesses and community.
Effingham High School Girls Basketball: Jeff Schafer (Southern Illinois Basketball Circuit Director (SIBC))
How to Get to Effingham
By Car: Effingham resides on a true crossroads, right in the middle of Illinois, where Interstate 57 meets Interstate 70. Arriving by car on these highways couldn’t be simpler. Access the town from the interstates or routes 45, 40 or 32.
By Air: Regional airports include Effingham County Memorial Airport and Shelby County Airport in Shelbyville, 33 miles away. The nearest major airport is in Decatur, located 66 miles away.
Company Name: City of Effingham Convention & Visitors Bureau
Sports Sales Manager: Jodi Thoele
Title: Director of Tourism