Feel at Home in hopedale
Pros: When you arrive at Hopedale you can tell it is a friendly town. As you approach the town you will probably have some people wave hello to you, even though they don't know you. The Casey's on the corner is redone and a hub of conversation, food & friendly faces. Once you get to the course you pull past the shelter into the big gravel parking lot on the right. Hold #1 is past the shelter to the east. There is a map showing the first 9 holes and it will hopefully be updated to show the other new 3 holes soon. The course is well maintained and has very mature trees. It takes advantage of the land and natural obstacles. If you come here for any tournaments you usually play the 12 holes 3 times to equal a regular 36 holes for a tournament. There are also some alternate tees and a long placement for basket #3 200 ft south of the current hole #3's basket. They set up a temporary basket for the summer tournament and I hope someday they will make it a permanent alternate pin placement. It is a great course, family friendly, but with enough challenge to make it a fun course for advanced players. There are some tough line, like hole #3 & #6 which have a good risk and reward, giving you a chance for a birdie if you hit that nice line. I have thrown birdies on every hole, except the new #11, but I have only throw from that new tee pad (back about 50 feet from the old one) once and had a 75 ft shot for the birdie from . For some added difficulty play the road, dirt(#7 & #8) and use an island green for #9 and all else OB, and OB baseball fields(#10 & #12)and fence lines. This increases the difficulty of the course quite a bit and will change your casual upshot or putt at #7 into a big risk and reward shot with OB 10 feet behind the basket. I have played this course since it was created in 2009 and I usually try to play it when I'm in town visiting family. After you play hole #9, the tee pad for ten in up by the baseball diamond. Throw off the right edge of the concrete at the concession stand past the pine trees and into the group of trees. #11's tee pad is tucked into the back, SE of 10's basket shooting through the open field. Holes 10, 11 and 12 are only available to play during the off season of Baseball. During baseball these baskets are pulled due to the high traffic area of the baseball diamonds. The restrooms are very nice and if you visit on a Wednesday in the summer they have a farmers market at the shelter. At each basket there are bricks in the ground pointing you to the next basket. Holes # 3, 6, 8, 9 & 10 are my favorite at this course.
Cons: The tee pads have great texture and I have played in snow and not slipped. I do wish they were a little bit longer and I wish the tee signs gave a small diagram of tee pad, basket & an arrow pointing to the next tee pad. When I first played it I was curious about the short walk between 6 & 7 and 8 & 9, but the way the course is laid out with a road right down the middle of it, then splitting at tee pad #7, it is designed to fit perfectly into the park.
Other Thoughts: I have played a lot of courses in small towns and this course gets a gold star for using the entire park. It has a wonderful layout which will not be too aggravating to new players, but still fun for advanced players. The trees and tee pad to basket lines make this feel like the park was designed to have a disc golf course in it. It reminds me of a smaller version of Grand View in Des Moines. The designer Chad, did a great job and has a lot of support from the Lions Club and the local community. The park is very clean, well maintained and peaceful to play in. If you are in Morton, Perkin, Lincoln or driving down 155, stop in and play this course! It is within a 30 minute drive from Peoria or Bloomington/Normal and worth the short trip. Also I heard a new course might be in the works in Miner so keep your eyes peeled. It is also a lot of fun to play with a large group and a variety of skill levels.
2 Helpful / 0 Not
A quick and fun break!
Pros: *Offers tough but rewarding lines to hit
*Well maintained park
*Big, nice baskets
*Holes 3,8, and 9 are comparable to holes on high caliber courses
Cons: *Only 9 holes
Other Thoughts: If I was road tripping to high caliber courses in the central Illinois area, Hopedale would be a refreshing break that still offered moderate challenges on each hole. The lines presented make appropriate disc selection an important part of the course. However, the holes are not difficult enough to make it an "epic" course.
Hopedale, Illinois is a small town and the park seems to be a hub of activity. There are baseball diamonds, a school, and vending on site. Therefore, it is a very well maintained park and is sure to be enjoyable. Unfortunately, Hopedale is probably too far out of your way to justify a special trip to it.
Overall, I am giving Hopedale Park a high rating because if it had 9 more holes comparable to holes 3, 8, and 9, I would probably make it a favorite.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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