A Visitor’s Guide to Orland Park, Illinois
Orland Park, IL enjoyed 15 minutes of fame back in the early 2000s, as the birthplace of Bill Rancic, the entrepreneur who won the first season of “The Apprentice” more than a decade ago. But since Rancic’s days in the Cook County village, the place has gone through a growth and development renaissance. The population has exploded from under 25,000 in 1980 to nearly 60,000 today, part of a boom that’s included the expansion of local school districts and healthcare providers in the area.
With golf courses, shopping and a large conference center, Orland Park has become a thriving area where people visit to spend time doing the things they love. Whether you’re a duffer who’s in town for a work event or an outdoorsy type who’s heard about the many parks and recreation programs Orland Park has to offer, you’re sure to find activities to suit your tastes.
And speaking of tastes, we suggest you stop by our Orland Park location for a few slices of pizza before you get too far into a day of sightseeing. Not only will you quell an empty belly, but you’re guaranteed to be happier as you walk around town. Pizza has that effect on people — trust us.
Summertime in the City: Stop by Centennial Park Aquatic Center
When the temperatures rise, it’s no mystery where you can find the people of Orland Park. They’re all at Centennial Park Aquatic Center, a giant water wonderland featuring:
- Body speed slides
- Lazy river tubing
- Water falls
- Tube slide measuring 328 feet
- Platform cliff jump
- Flume slide
Don’t feel like hitting the water? Try out the sand volleyball courts located at the park. Take a timeout to enjoy a packed lunch or just lay on a chair and soak up the sun while the kids run around. The aquatic center is so busy it’s been expanded multiple times and is the most popular destination among the Orland Park recreation system each summer.
The park stands out for its cleanliness and appeal to all ages. Whether your kids are toddlers or high schoolers, they’ll find suitable activities at Centennial Park. Make sure to bring the sunscreen and pack enough food for many hours of relaxation and enjoyment.
Antique Your Way Across the City
Antiquing offers a fun way to spend a day in Orland Park. Work your way through the slew of antique shops that populate Beacon Avenue in the city. You’ll find a wide selection at the stores, including everything from cute collectibles to higher-end items. Chat with the knowledgeable shopkeepers to learn more about the items on display. They’re always happy to engage with new customers.
Some stores specialize in jewelry or furniture, while others offer a more generalized selection. No matter which location you choose, you’ll find friendly people and good prices. You’ll also enjoy talking with others about your hobby.
Visit the Mall for More Contemporary Deals
Once you’ve had your fill of older treasures, hit the Orland Square Mall to find clothes, Apple products, Disney wares and much more. The recently renovated mall houses more than 150 stores as well as a children’s play area where you can park the kids while you take a much-needed breather. The food court is also brand new in case you need a bit of sustenance to keep you going.
Hit the Course for Great Golf
What are the ingredients to a great day of golf? A challenging but not frustrating course, plentiful refreshments, pleasant scenery and at least a few moments when your clubs are actually cooperating. While you may not be able to control the latter, you can find all three of the former at Orland Park’s two standout golf courses:
- Crystal Tree Golf & Country Club offers well-maintained greens and a well-organized course. A friendly and attentive staff help make your experience one to remember.
- Silver Creek offers two 18-hole courses as well as a nine-hole executive course for those visits when you don’t have time to play a full round.
Maybe long-course golf isn’t your thing. Well, then find your way to Space Golf, a mini golf location in Orland Park that’s unlike anywhere you’ve played before. The indoor course has been backlit with black lights, and those aren’t the only special effects. Holograms, motion projectors and lasers will all light up your 18-hole experience. Jam out to the music while you try to sink a putt — it’s not as easy as it sounds.
Go Row a Boat
Getting out on the water can include more than just going for a swim in Orland Park. The area is also home to Lake Sedgewick, a 75-acre body of water where you can enjoy numerous activities throughout the year.
Fisherman can catch sunfish, walleyes, northern pike, crappies and more. Rent a kayak or paddle boat for a fun day out on the water that doubles as a killer workout. Once you’ve had your fill of the water, you can take a hike on one of the many paths or nature trails surrounding the lake.
Catch a Play or Get a Few Laughs
The active recreation department also includes a theater branch. The Orland Park Theater Troupe has been performing since 1993 and puts on a yearly musical in April, performed at the Sandburg High School Performing Art Center, in addition to other productions in the summer and fall at the Orland Park Civic Center.
If comedy is more your thing, you won’t want to miss the Orland Park IMPROV team, a group of gifted comedians who bring the funny in their monthly performance at the Civic Center. The fast-paced show jumps quickly from topic to topic and incorporates a lot of current events humor.
Enjoy a Fun Day on the Town in Orland Park
Antiquing, golfing, going to the theater — there’s lots going on in Orland Park. If you come in the winter, make sure you return in the summer so you can hit the famed water park. But no matter when you visit, enjoy the bustle of the busy city that hums with activity all year round!