Macomb may not spring to mind as a sports mecca. It doesn’t have the enviable weather of Florida or the cachet of California or the mountain scenery of Colorado. But what it does have will warm any sports travel planner’s heart: location.
Tucked along the western border of Illinois and quite close to the state lines of Iowa and Missouri, Macomb is only about an hour from the Mississippi River. The landscape will evoke memories of America’s agricultural heyday; after all, one of the attractions on the website of the Macomb Area Convention and Visitors Bureau is a tour of historic barns. But Macomb goes well beyond livestock, although it does work to retain its community feel.
Macomb is a college town. Two colleges, in fact: Western Illinois University and the satellite campus of Spoon River College call this city home. This gives Macomb an edge when it comes to sports facilities.
There are three main types of sports facilities in Macomb – state park, local park and those affiliated with Western Illinois University.
Macomb Park District
Combined, the 12 parks of Macomb offer playgrounds, mini-golf, disc golf, baseball, softball, hiking, tennis, volleyball, canoeing and much more. Ball Fore Family Entertainment Center has an 18-hole mini-golf course, a driving range, a sand volleyball court, an archery range, a playground, basketball facilities and concessions. Spring Lake Park and neighboring Lakeview Nature Area are ideal when it’s time to unwind. View unspoiled Illinois scenery at the nature area, or camp, fish or golf at the park.
Horn Field Campus
Run by Western Illinois University’s Department of Recreation, Park and Tourism Administration, this rustic retreat covers 92 acres of woodlands and prairie. It’s set on a former summer home property and contains a brick lodge and three cabins. Strolling the trails is encouraged, but more vigorous pastimes are permitted as well. Horn Field Campus has hosted several events, most notably a Challenge Course that tests the climbing and endurance skills of its participants. The facilities include a teams course, high-low ropes course, a climbing tower, and – seasonally – a corn maze.
Aquatics Center at Western Illinois University
A 25-yard pool is the centerpiece of the Aquatics Center. Additional amenities include a sauna, a hot tub and locker rooms.
Harry Mussatto Golf Course
Set along the banks of the Lamoine River, this Western Illinois University golf course is divided into two 9-hole courses, the Oscar Champ Nine and Eric Gleacher Nine. There’s also additional space set aside for practice.
Argyle State Park
With a 93-acre lake and five miles of foot trails, this park will keep those who love the outdoors happy. Hike, fish, boat, or bring a horse and explore the horse trails.
Attractions and Accommodations
If you’re looking for big-name attractions, theme parks or megawatt resorts, Macomb isn’t your style. But if you’re looking for a small-town feel and access to the great outdoors, then Macomb will fit the bill. Popular activities include disc golf (two courses, one on campus at Western Illinois University), camping, hiking, fishing, boating and canoeing. And then there’s golf – no fewer than three golf courses are available in Macomb. There are two art museums – Western Illinois University’s Art Gallery and West Central Illinois Arts Center. There’s also the Historic Barn Tour, which features more than 20 barns of different styles. But for sheer impact, it’s hard to beat the Macomb Balloon Rally, a September spectacle since 1987. Staying in Macomb gets you a choice of budget and mid-range national chain hotels.
Getting Here and Getting Around
Macomb, located between I-74 and I-72, is approximately 1½ hours from Davenport, three hours from St. Louis, 3½ hours from Des Moines, four hours from Chicago and five hours from Indianapolis. Macomb is equidistant from Quad Cities International Airport in Moline (75 miles) and Peoria International Airport (72 miles). Both airports are served by Delta, Allegiant, American Eagle and United. Flight destinations include Las Vegas, Dallas, Phoenix, Tampa, Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit and Minneapolis. Both airports have car rental facilities either onsite or nearby.
Contact the Macomb Area CVB directly for more information on group travel assistance. It can provide event registration and coordination assistance, plus visitor guides and maps.
The Macomb area is convenient for travelers throughout the Midwest. If your group wants a place to play, consider Macomb’s lively college facilities, family-friendly parks and great natural areas.
ContactMacomb Area CVB
Tamara Parker, Executive Director 201 S. Lafayette, Macomb, IL 61455
Phone: 309-833-1315 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org