Welcome to Williamson County

Looking for the perfect golf tournament spot? Searching through page after page of travel recommendations and tourist sites? Well, you don’t have to worry about having to feel that migraine ever again. Your search stops at the wonderful Williamson County. The open-field terrain of Southern Illinois makes it the perfect spot for multiple golf courses of excellent quality. Visiting this place doesn’t just mean falling in love with the golf courses, though. You’ll also fall in love with Williamson County itself.

Fast-growing Williamson County beckons travelers as a regional destination for high-quality outdoor recreation, sports events, cultural attractions, family entertainment and hospitality. A vibrant destination for everything outdoors, visitors from throughout the Midwest come to explore its renowned lakes and stunning natural areas – See more. Enjoy the high-quality athletic activities and year-round special events, more than 100 restaurants, wineries and 24 lodging facilities.

Fun things for your free time

What really sets a good tournament apart from a great one are the memories made—not just during the event, but outside of it as well. With that in mind, Williamson County provides every visitor with plenty to do during their leisure time. This rustic refuge offers natural beauty, delicious dining and engaging entertainment for its eagerly awaited guests.

Being located in a rural area, it’s no surprise that many of Williamson County’s attractions involve enjoying Mother Nature. Arrowhead Lake Nature Trail and Campground offers peaceful hikes; leisurely strolls can be had at other locations, too, including Cannon Park and Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge.

After working up an appetite from all that hiking, you’ll probably want to try some of Williamson’s unique restaurants. Enjoy a wide variety of cuisine at places like the 20’s Hideout Steakhouse, Bennie’s Italian Food, Burger Nook and Casa Vieja. From Italian to Mexican or steak to burgers, Williamson’s restaurants have something for everyone.

Of course, who could forget the Southern Illinois Miners, Williamson’s resident Frontier League baseball team? Inspire young teams by enjoying a day at Marion’s Rent One Park and watching the Miners take on teams like the Joliet Slammers and Windy City Thunderbolts.


X Factors

  • Work with hotels to get blocks of rooms
  • Social media marketing
  • Local media coverage
  • Site visits

Planner Perspective

Lake of Egypt is the perfect place to get an early start to your fishing season. Warm water discharged from a local power plant allows the fish to put on the early spring feed bag and even spawn during March when most anglers think they have to go hundreds of miles south to catch those big slab crappie. Our tournament anglers have learned that Southern Illinois is the go to place to catch sumo sized fish early in the year. It is truly one of America’s best kept fishing secrets.

Darrell VanVactor – Operations Manager Crappie USA

Fabulous facilities provide for quality competition

Crab Orchard Golf Club

Sports:  Golf

Named in Golf Digest’s Best Places to Play, Crab Orchard Golf Club in Carterville is a scenic, par-70 golf course featuring lush fairways winding through stands of mature oak trees. Water hazards come into play on half of the holes and the small greens have subtle breaks, which can make them difficult to read. The golf course is quite formidable from the championship tees, but the forward and middle tees make it approachable for all skill levels. Crab Orchard also has a large driving range, which boasts target greens and a practice bunker. For the little ones, a junior course is available.

The Links at Kokopelli Golf Club

Sports:  Golf

Golf Week magazine in 2014 rated the 18-hole course at the Kokopelli Golf Club in Marion as one of the best places to play in Illinois. This high-quality, affordably priced facility features 7,154 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 72. The course rating is 72.2 and it has a slope rating of 132. With five sets of tees and 96 sprawling bunkers, this course offers a fair challenge at an excellent price. On top of all that, Kokopelli includes amenities such as a pro-shop with choice brand merchandise, a restaurant, and a bar and grill.

Pine Lakes Golf Club

Sports:  Golf

Pine Lakes Golf Club in Herrin is an 18-hole golf course with a driving range and practice green. Pine Lakes features 5,889 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 67. Recent enhancements were made to the tee boxes, while greens were enlarged or reshaped and more sand traps were added. The course rating is 67 and it has a slope rating of 107. A clubhouse features a snack bar, full-service bar, game room, shuffle board, big screen TVs and plenty of comfortable seating, not to mention rentable banquet facilities for everything from birthdays to victory feasts.

Stardust Golf and Country Club

Sports: Golf

If you’re looking for a smaller venue, Stardust Golf and Country Club is a semi-private, nine-hole golf course located in Johnston City. Designed by George Jansco and opened in 1969, this beautiful course features 2,972 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 36. Three ponds come into play on four holes. The large greens are slightly elevated, and the fairways are tree-lined. Some holes have grass bunkers and others have sand bunkers protecting the greens. The course rating is 35 and it has a slope rating of 129.

Getting there is half the fun

Williamson County lies sprawled across the prairies and plains of Southern Illinois, in a location that couldn’t be easier to get to from north, south, east or west. Whether you’re traveling by air or land, you’ll find the traveling easy enough.

By Car: Williamson County is crisscrossed by several major motorways. IL 13 crosses the county east to west, and Interstate 57 cuts right through Marion, going north and south. Route 24, south of Williamson, merges with 57 at the county borders and provides another way to access Williamson.

By Air: Getting to Williamson by air couldn’t be easier, seeing as the nearest airport is Williamson County Regional Airport, right in the middle of Marion, the most central city in the county. For good measure, the second nearest major airport is Barkley Regional Airport in Paducah, Kentucky, 58 miles away.