The 411 on Chicago Southland

So you’re brainstorming places for your next event and you’re looking for some inspiration. Chicago Southland has a lot to offer sporting groups. Its facilities are superb and the region’s location is perfect spot to spend spare time. You’ll never run out of fun things to see and do, just beyond the city limits. Not to mention all the affordable lodging options in six different areas within Chicago Southland and easy access via numerous interstates. From shopping to dining, entertainment centers to parks, you will find adventure after adventure in Chicago Southland.

What is there to do around Chicago Southland?

Brookfield Zoo has a large spectrum of animals, from big cats to dolphins to amphibians. The Tinley Park District’s White Water Canyon Water Park is five acres of water-filled fun, with a lazy river, spray ground and drop slides. Odyssey Fun World, also part of Tinley Park District, offers laser tag, go-karts, bumper boats and an inflatable park.

Hollywood Park Family Fun Center in Crestwood has a Hollywood-themed speedway, arcade games, a rock wall and Hollywood memorabilia. Haunted Trails Family Entertainment Center in Burbank features over one hundred games, rides and a haunted house and trail in October.

Irons Oaks Environmental Learning Center sits on 38-acres of team building atmosphere. With challenges like a high-ropes course, climbing wall and crate climbing, the emphasis is always on over-coming obstacles and developing the values of leadership, team building and problem solving.

With a multitude of railfan sights including double diamonds, Pullman National Landmark District and one of the only places to see a double wye junction in the country, just minutes away from each other, it is easy to see why railfans love the Chicago Southland.

There’s a restaurant for every craving in Chicago Southland. From Mexican and Italian to Thai and American, everyone’s taste buds will be satisfied. Glenwood Oaks Rib and Chop House was recently voted best ribs in the Chicago area by Chicago Magazine and has earned many other awards. Siam Marina introduces Chef Pham’s unique Thai sauces and seasonings, tempting guests to come back for more.

For specialty shopping in Chicago Southland, try Old Orland Antique Shops and Historic Downtown-Frankfort, both in 19th century neighborhoods and get handmade chocolates from Fabulously Sweet Creations.

X Factors

  • Social media marketing for events
  • Volunteer staff
  • Grant program
  • PR/media coverage
  • Signage
  • Site visits
  • Microsite
  • Custom online reservation link
  • Discounts to local attractions

Planner Perspective

Working in collaboration with the Chicago Southland CVB has opened up endless opportunities for our organization.

– Toi Baylor, Baylor Youth Foundation

What’s unique about Chicago Southland’s facilities?

Matteson Community CenterMatteson Community Center

Sports: Basketball, swimming, tennis, baseball, football, soccer, dance, track

The Matteson Community Center is a 73,000-square-foot facility with a variety of venues, including two indoor basketball courts, two youth baseball diamonds, one soccer field and a football field with seating.

Memorial Park Fields

Sports: Baseball, softball

The six-field complex at Memorial Park Fields in Midlothian is in an offset wheel pattern. It features permanent restroom facilities and concessions, 300-foot fencing and plenty of parking.

Southland Center

Sports: Baseball, basketball, football, soccer, martial arts, cheerleading, dance, gymnastics, lacrosse, rugby

The newly renovated Southland Center in Lynwood offers up to 100,000 square feet of indoor space plus outdoor baseball facilities. The facility features state-of-the-art Desso Turf, four hardwood basketball courts, a full service restaurant and a bar with over 1,200 parking spaces.

Standard Bank Stadium

Sports: Baseball, softball

Host to the Windy City ThunderBolts of the Frontier League, Standard Bank Stadium in Crestwood is easily accessible to interstate 294. Standard Bank Stadium boasts a seating capacity of over 3,000, a brand new multi-use synthetic turf field and a HD LED video scoreboard.

Tinley Park Convention Center

Sports: Gymnastics, cheerleading, dance, martial arts

The Tinley Park Convention Center has 70,000 square feet of event space (58,000 contiguous) with up to 35-foot ceiling heights. The size and flexibility of the space make it an ideal venue for many types of sporting events.Toyota Park

Sports: Soccer, football

Host of the Chicago Fire Soccer Club, Toyota Park in Bridgeview is a 469,000-square-foot venue with 20,000 seats and a regulation-size soccer field. There are also regulation-size natural grass and turf fields.

Oak Lawn Pavilion

Sports: Volleyball, basketball, badminton, soccer, softball

The Oak Lawn Pavilion in Oak Lawn has a 28,000-square-foot main arena suitable for hosting volleyball and basketball tournaments. The facility also boasts eight volleyball courts, two sand volleyball courts, four regulation basketball courts, four badminton courts, a regulation-size outdoor soccer field, one soccer rink and four lit softball fields.

Veterans Memorial Park

Sports: Softball, baseball

Veterans Memorial Park in South Holland offers a youth softball field, youth baseball field, full concessions and permanent restroom facilities. Veterans Memorial Park hosted the 2015 Junior League Little League Girls Softball Tournament which is a precursor to the Little League Junior League Softball World Series.

What are my routing options?

Chicago Southland has a variety of transportation choices to pick from, on ground or in the air. Seven different interstates (I-55, I-57, I-80, I-90, I-94, I-294 and I-355) are woven throughout Chicago Southland.

By Car: Only 22 minutes from downtown Chicago, and a close distance to states from the north, south, east and west, Chicago Southland couldn’t be easier to reach. Chicago Southland is 300 miles or less from Indianapolis, Milwaukee and Detroit. Bus charters such as Megabus are also an option.

By Air: Two major airports are within close reach to Chicago Southland—Midway International Airport and O’Hare International Airport.