The History of Idlewild
In that year, a small group of men headed by Fred Newman (who became Idlewild’s first president) decided to establish a club and build the finest golf course in the district. So they engaged Al Naylor for the handsome sum of $60 a month to lay out the course, be the grounds keeper, teach the members the game, run the pro shop and take charge of training the caddies. The land suggested by Naylor was the property that ultimately became the Beverly Country Club. The founding fathers, however, thought this was too near the city and wanted a day in the country when taking an outing. And so it came to pass that Flossmoor became our home. Each one of the original group, which boasted such names as Julius Rosenwald, Albert Loeb, Leo Steele, Ed Wedles, Sidney Mandle, put up $25 earnest money and Idlewild was born. But tough times were encountered. It became custom of many members to loan the club money to function and “eat out” the debt in the club’s excellent dining room.
It’s hard to believe that the dues in 1918 were $150. The club ran into an operating deficit requiring a $30 assessment. The members called a meeting to consider this levy, and the ensuing debate was so heated that the President resigned from office. A precedent was established, but unfortunately never followed by any subsequent incumbent.
At this time, the club was prosperous. It had a waiting list, watered fairways, a swimming pool and air conditioning. The ambitions of the founders was fulfilled as Idlewild hit the half-century mark with one of the finest courses in the district.
Idlewild accelerates its marketing as one of the South Side’s premier wedding, banquet, event destinations. And we are still all of that.
More than 60 members of Idlewild agree to volunteer and marshal the 8th hole at the US Open won by Jim Furyk at the North Course at Olympia Fields. A fun week for members, volunteering and guests playing Idlewild and be shuttled to the US Open.
Forty plus members of the recently sold Woodmar Country Club in Hammond, Indiana decided to join Idlewild and bring an infusion of fun, energy and golfing talent.
Idlewild Country Club celebrated its “Centennial Year”. Several extra celebrations were planned that summer beginning with an Opening Dinner/Lobster Fest, a Membership Golf Outing, a Family 100th Birthday Party & Carnival, a Formal Centennial Gala, and a Flick & Float Night with Fireworks. The Board of Directors and members look forward to continuing the fine traditions of Idlewild Country Club for another 100 years!
Fifty plus members of Ravisloe Country Club (which is now a public course) bring their talents a mile southeast and continue to add to the Idlewild success story.
Brings a very vibrant club with over 400 memberships along with one of the strongest food & beverage options in the south suburbs. The course remains in pristine condition boosting 5 par fives and 5 par threes. The club features year round activities for the golfers and families as well.
Idlewild sees an infusion of talented golfers coming out of Calumet Country Club, as Calumet’s future is not set in stone. The addition of ex- Calumet members continues into 2021.
Amid the burgeoning pandemic, Idlewild operates as state mandates loosen becoming an outdoor oasis for our membership whether golfing, swimming or using the newly installed pickleball courts. Idlewild also authorized a new irrigation system to further improve course conditions.
With well over 400 golf and social members, Idlewild looks forward to the completion of our irrigation project and has an active ear to members over what we can do not only to be a great golf venue, but continue to offer great culinary delights, comradery, fun and a fun spirit.