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This wooded 18-hole course with narrow fairways and gently rolling terrain offers 6,107 challenging yards on its par 71 course. Opened in 1922, it is named for Lt. Clayton Ingersoll, who lost his life in an air crash over France in World War I. This course is located on Rockford’s far west side and was selected by the Tiger Woods Foundation to host Tiger Woods for a two-day golf clinic in 2001 and 2004.
Dedicated in 2004, Ingersoll Learning Links four-hole course and practice center is adjacent to the clubhouse. The Learning Links is the perfect place for families and children of all ages to have fun playing the game of golf. It features holes ranging from 60 yards to 105 yards (when played with regular golf balls). Adults can level the playing field for a more competitive experience by using Cayman or “Almost Golf” balls to lengthen the Learning Links.
Ingersoll Golf Course opened September 22, 1922, becoming the Rockford Park District’s second public course.
In 1919, the district purchased land at West State Street and Daisyfield Road and the Ingersoll family donated $50,000 for the old Plin Smith estate to be converted into a recreational park in honor of their son, Lt. Clayton C. Ingersoll, who died in 1918 when his plane crashed during an Army Air Corps training exercise in France.
However, in 1921, a severe drought killed much of the newly-planted grass at Ingersoll, spurring the development of a state-of-the-art watering system that could water all 18 greens on the golf course.
With the grass restored, Ingersoll Golf Course officially opened to the public with a patriotic ceremony honoring the memory of Lt. Ingersoll.
The golf course was designed by Thomas Bendelow, who designed the country’s first public course located in New York City. Bendelow also designed the famous #3 course at Medinah Country Club in Chicago.
In 1924, a striking brick clubhouse was added to Ingersoll Golf Course, thanks to a $5,000 donation from Winthrop Ingersoll.
In the late 1990’s an effort to bring the Tiger Woods Foundation to Rockford began. The goal of the Tiger Woods Foundation is to introduce golf to children who historically have not had the opportunity to play, such as racial minorities and low-income children. In 2001, Rockford was selected to host a clinic at Ingersoll Golf Course.
In 2004, Ingersoll Learning Links was added to Ingersoll Golf Course to encourage everyone to try the game of golf. The four-hole course is designed for children and their families, as well as beginner golfers.
Ingersoll Golf Course is an 18-hole course, covering 6,228 yards. It’s known for its narrow, tree-lined fairways, and gently undulating terrain. It includes sand bunkers, but does not have any water hazards.
Photo credit: Jesse Fox