3 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: This course is conveniently right next to the NIU campus. The first five holes are my favorite because of the fact that more trees come into play. The last 4 are more in an open prairie, which is good if you have a big arm. I played this course all the time because it is the only full course in DeKalb, and it can be pretty fun.
Cons: I wish there were 9 more holes on this course. If the park district would make more holes on the wooded side of the river it would make for an awesome course. They also might want to invest in some cement or rubber tee pads. It kind of sucks when you are throwing on dirt or wood chips.
Other Thoughts: Overall, I enjoyed this course when I was a student at NIU. If you go earlier in the day it is generally not as crowded, but if you go on a nice day in the afternoon you may have to wait between holes. I really hope they add more holes in the future, it would make the course much better.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
7 Helpful / 0 Not
Home of the Monolith tee signs.
Pros: Prairie Park has the craziest tee signs I've ever seen. They are HUGE slabs of sloping concrete with a hole map mounted on them. Every time I walk up to a hole I wonder how much money they wasted on these huge slabs of concrete that they will never be able to move. The "never able to move" part is the real shame, since this course is badly in need of a redesign.
Cons: The park is very small, so nine holes are pretty well crammed in here. That being said, there is some wasted land and the holes that are there are really too close together. The pins and tees are far too close together, causing people to throw at each other a lot. Combine that with the walking path that winds around by #5, 6 & 9 and you get a course that really does not feel very safe for players or other park users when the park is crowded, and it gets very crowded often.
There are some woods in the park, but all of the pins are set in the open. They easily could have tucked some pin placements into the woods to add some challenge. The holes are pretty open and flat and do not demand a variety of shots to navigate. The Kishwaukee River really does not come into play at all. You would have to shoot really long or flip your shot really badly on the holes that are near it to go wet. So for a challenge factor, the layout rates very low. Hole #9 could be tricky, but that is about it.
The tees are rutted dirt spots that fill with water when it rains. They should have used some of the concrete they wasted on the huge tee signs to make some concrete tee pads.
There is no parking lot, only parking on the street. Hole #1 plays right toward that street. If you flip your drive or go long on hole #1, you will probably hit a disc golfers car parked on the street. When you get there you should turn around and park in front of a house on the other side of the street.
Other Thoughts: In defense of the people who work on this course, it has been hit hard over the last few seasons by floods and storms. They have lost some trees, and given the generally poor course design they really couldn't afford to lose any. Despite the damage to the park, it still is in very nice shape and is maintained very well. But the well maintained park cannot cover the shortcomings of this course. If you like boring golf where you constantly throw at other golfers and park users, Prairie Park is your course. If you don't like boring golf where you constantly throw at other golfers and park users, the only reason I can think of to go to Prairie Park is to see those crazy tee signs.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 3 Not
Only game in town
Pros: It's in town.
Since it's a 9 holer, you can play it rather quickly. There's some shot selection, but not much.
Hole 3 is a very aceable, or at the very least, birdieable. You should putt from the pin's dirt or close to that without a problem.
I have found quite a few free discs here! I have also lost quite a few discs here.....
Not too many like hole 9. I'm not one of them. It's a nice, 90 degree turn. It indeed is parable, but you have to sidearm it past the curve and avoid the trees. A decent distance, somewhat accurate sidearm shot will achieve this.
Hole 9 usually is the tiebreaker hole.
Good use of a small park.
Cons: Mosquitoes love this place.
Crazy crowded, especially when NIU is in session. And we're not talking threesomes, foursomes, etc. I've seen as many as eight people playing a single hole at a time. I found that if you arrive early in the morning (early = before 9) it's usually vacant.
This is a public park that has a path bissecting it. A loud "FORE!" will serve you well on a few holes, especially number 5. If a pedestrian crosses the bridge, there is a blind corner created by the treeline that will not allow them to see a disc for a few seconds.
Also, because this is a public park in a highly residential area, there are the occasional park-goers who are oblivious to the fact that people want to tee off. Again, a loud "FORE!" will serve you well, and cross your fingers. One time when I was there, a guy brought his kids to the park and the kids wound up playing with their toy trucks in the woodchips of the tee on hole #2.
Due to the size of the park, there's not really a "big" hole. Hole 4 is about 350 - 400' and that's it.
If this course wasn't just down the road I wouldn't play it as much as I do.
Other Thoughts: Skip this course and drive out to Pioneer Park in Kirkland. It's much better!
5 of 8 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 1 Not
9 good holes
Pros: -Hole 6 is 400+ and wide open, unless you hook it into the river way to the right (which I've done a couple times in the past)
-good mix of long and shorter holes.
-Tree lines on the last few holes make it good for a sidearmer, and allows you to find a few freebies from time to time.
-#9 has a 90 degree dogleg to the right, and nearly impossible to birdie.
-Usually shoot +1 to-1 (playing all par 3s), never much better or worse.
Cons: -Unless you go early on a weekday, it's kind of crowded.
Other Thoughts: -Good park to take your dog along with you, nice and open.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful.
2 Helpful / 2 Not
De Kalb, IL
Pros: Very nice short course but Hole 9. The only course in town so we played it alot while staying in town.
Cons: The park is crowded after about 4pm and when NIU started up for the fall semester. My friend lost a few disc in the river off hole 6. During the summer months the Mosquitoes are very bad on holes 7 and 8.
Other Thoughts: A nice course with very aceable holes, but watch the river on holes 3 and 6.
2 of 4 people found this review helpful.
4 Helpful / 0 Not
A nice course to play
Pros: Nice use of space in this park, as there are nine fun holes to play. Some, though not all, are pretty challenging. A couple of longer ones, with some fairly wooded holes as well. Requires some skill, but not the hardest I've played. Clearly marked tees and holes - it would be hard to get lost or mixed up at this course.
Cons: Very, very buggy - especially after the flood a couple of weeks ago. Mosquitoes were bad even before then, and I've heard they've gotten worse. The back few holes can be pretty moist, even when it hasn't rained recently. The river can provide some trouble on a couple of the holes, and the first few are close to the road (though it isn't a very busy area). If you lose a disc in that murky river, you are NOT getting it back. Some holes are a bit too easy, all told.
Other Thoughts: This is a very good course, which would be enjoyable for first time or long time players. The holes don't all provide a ton of challenge, but some do and it's enough to make it an enjoyable course. Just bring plenty of bug spray - you may even want to avoid it for a few more weeks while the weather gets cooler. All told, I would still recommend this course.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
5 Helpful / 0 Not
Pros: The course is a big open field that is great for those of us who like to chuck our discs and often times misfire. In addition to that it is the only course around for miles and it's conveniently located right on the NIU campus.
Cons: It is a boring course and the tee pads are literally a pile of wood chips. The field is over grown with clovers and other things that aren't grass. Point being the disc does not always stand out as much as it would at other courses.
The river that runs through it is disgusting, There is a sign near by saying how all the fish are poisonous (as if any could live in that Beijing style water), and if I ever through my disc into it (which is possible on a couple holes) I would not go into get it. I like my discs as much as anyone else but I'd be terrified of growing a third eye or something.
Other Thoughts: All my cons aside i would go back there.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
3 Helpful / 4 Not
Pros: The park is very well maintained. None of the holes are overly long or short(200-420). The course has a good mix of dog legs and straight holes. A good course for not losing discs when the wind is down.
Cons: The course lacks anyting very technical (although hole 9 is a bit of a challenge). The pin positions aren't ever changed. This course would rock if they opened up another nine holes.
Other Thoughts: The river comes into play on holes 3 and 6 (be careful if its windy). Bring plenty of bug spray after May.
3 of 7 people found this review helpful.
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