National 9 to get clubhouse upgrade
A mobile tralier used as the club house for the Gelnview National 9 Golf Course is torn down, Sept, 26th, 2012 to make way for a newer structure to be built in the spring. | Geoff Scheerer~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 12, 2012 6:02AM
A course ranger and starter since 2001, Sheldon Kurtz parked his golf cart near the old clubhouse trailer at Glenview National 9 Golf Course for one of the last times.
A few days later, on Sept. 26, the Glenview Park District mobile building was demolished.
It will be replaced with a $2.2 million clubhouse and four attached paddle tennis courts.
The facility at 2800 W. Lake Ave. is set to open for the 2013 golf season in April.
“There’s excitement among the rangers and starters. My feeling is that people come by and don’t give the golf course a fair rating because of the mobile clubhouse,” said Kurtz, of Glenview. “In my opinion, National 9 is one of the best nine-hole courses in Illinois. It has great drainage.”
Kurtz also said the paddle tennis courts will serve patrons well.
“The new clubhouse gives us a place for guests to sit and talk.”
Earlier this year, Glenview Park District met with four focus groups for residential input, such as George Emme who took up paddle tennis in 2002 at Valley Lo Club in Glenview.
“It is an extremely social sport for men and women because you need four players – a lot of camaraderie,” said Emme, 74.
“The sport grew up in private clubs, so often after games you could sit with friends to eat have a drink. After playing tennis for many years, paddle tennis has taken over my life as a sport.”
Concept plans for the new facility were shown in May at a public hearing.
The outdoor paddle tennis courts are heated for play from September to March.
Indoor clubhouse space includes glassed seating areas for viewing golf and paddle tennis, a sports equipment supply shop, fireplace, an office, restrooms, a kitchen and bar for seating eight to 10 patrons.
Outside, a large berm with evergreen trees planted along West Lake Avenue will screen the paddle tennis courts from the neighborhood.
A survey issued last year to a residential database found 89 percent favored paddle tennis courts — divided evenly between men and women.
Another 70 percent had never played the sport, the survey reported.
Resident Molly Schmidt participated in the focus groups.
“Historically, paddle tennis was a country club sport, but now it’s at public facilities,” she said, adding the sport “can be exhilarating” while playing in winter.
“It’s amazing how quickly you warm up even on zero-degree days. Paddle tennis is a great way to break out of the winter doldrums and get some sun,” said Schmidt, a 1979 graduate of Glenbrook South High School in Glenview, where she played on the tennis team.
With paddle tennis and golf, she said the new clubhouse will now be used year round.
Glenview Park District Executive Director Chuck Balling said the new clubhouse was part of the 2010 strategic rebuilding plan, adding constructing the clubhouse did not raise taxes.
During construction, the National 9 Golf Club was closed on Sept. 23 for this year’s golfing season.
National 9 golfers are invited to play at the 18-hole Glenview Park Golf Club located at 800 Shermer Road.~.