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Chicago Southland Dazzles With Unique Meetings Venues

By published February 14, 2022

As we continue to navigate through the pandemic, the Chicago Southland is safely and enthusiastically ready to assist you in planning your regional meetings and events! We pride ourselves on stellar service and going the extra mile in assisting all planners, regardless of meeting or event size. The Chicago Southland VIP treatment is here for you!

Made up of 60 south and southwest suburbs of Chicago, the Chicago Southland is just 30 minutes or less from downtown Chicago. Our municipalities are easily accessible via interstates 55, 57, 80, 94, 294 and 355. We are located within a five-hour drive from eight different states (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin), making the commute to the Chicago Southland quick and easy. Unlike downtown Chicago, there is FREE parking at all hotels and most event venues and attractions throughout the region.

Still feeling a bit uneasy about COVID? Irons Oaks Environmental Learning Center in Olympia Fields is a unique exceptional outdoor option. Located on a 38-acre nature preserve, this is the perfect spot to incorporate team building. Activities such as high ropes, a climbing wall and crate stacking are among the exercises available, in addition to the 1,300 square foot conference center. Irons Oaks provides you and your attendees a secluded, relaxing environment for your meetings and/or events.

Located on the campus of Governors State University in University Park is the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park. Home to 32 permanent, world-renowned sculptures, this park is the perfect place to take a picturesque stroll in between meetings or sessions. Guided tours are available as well. If you’d prefer to stay indoors and enjoy the scenery from afar, Governors State University offers 29,000 square feet of indoor meeting space for you and your attendees to enjoy.

Fox Pointe in downtown Lansing has both an outdoor amphitheater and an open-air pavilion with state-of-the-art amenities. This multi-million-dollar venue opened in 2018 and is a great location for groups of all sizes and can accommodate 2,000 people in a lawn-type setting.

Looking to stay indoors? La Banque Hotel in Homewood is a stunning boutique property. Featuring 18 state-of-the-art guest rooms, La Banque is an excellent choice for company retreats, board meetings and other small gatherings. The hotel is located just steps from the Homewood Metra and Amtrak station, making commuting to and from the city quick and easy. La Banque also features an on-site restaurant, La Voute Bistro & Bar, which serves as a location for delicious meals before, during or after your meetings. And if you prefer meeting on the links, La Banque will shuttle you to Ravisloe Country Club which is only seconds away (The Chicago Southland also has over 30 golf courses to choose from as well).

If non-traditional space is what you desire, check out Thornton Distilling Co. in Thornton. This industrial chic, hometown rustic look is in Illinois’ oldest standing brewery (1857) and was once Al Capone’s largest production facility. With multiple event spaces, Thornton Distilling Co. can accommodate 150-300 guests.

Looking for a relaxing location to talk shop while enjoying a freshly brewed beer? The Chicago Southland has 17 breweries, all with distinctly delicious, crafted offerings that will certainly impress your groups attendees.

Want to add delicious food and wine into your meeting? Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant in Orland Park or New Lenox is perfect! Private events at Cooper’s Hawk can be hosted in semi-private rooms or The Barrel Room and can accommodate anywhere from 22-72 people.

Ready to release your inner child? Accelerate Indoor Speedway & Events is a fun place to fulfill your company’s need for speed. With 75,000 square feet, this indoor go-karting facility also allows you to release your inner warrior, and some stress, with an axe throwing area. There’s plenty more to enjoy like a full arcade, restaurant and meeting rooms to accommodate all your group’s needs.

Chicago Southland is also home to other amazing entertainment facilities, ready to host your next meeting or event, such as Dave & Buster’sHaunted Trails Amusement ParkIn the Game, Hollywood Park and Odyssey Fun World.

Venues that can add a unique sports flavor to your next regional meeting or event include SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, home to the Chicago Red Stars & Chicago House Athletic Club, where executive suites are available.  Ozinga Field in Crestwood is home to the Windy City ThunderBolts baseball team and would love to host your next meeting or event!

With over 40,000 acres of forestry, there is no shortage of incredible nature centers that are ready to welcome your attendees. These nature centers have a variety of fun outdoor activities to participate in like kayaking, canoeing, fishing, biking, hiking and more. The CenterMonee ReservoirSand Ridge Nature Center or Lake Katherine Nature Center & Botanic Gardens are just a few of the wonderful options to explore.

And of course, we offer outstanding traditional venues as well, including four full-service and numerous select service hotels to host your meeting of any size.

Not only does the Chicago Southland help plan events, but we also offer a wide variety of complimentary event services. From pre-event services, including brochure distribution, event listings and supplies, itinerary planning and marketing assistance to on-site services such as name badges, registration assistance and promotional signs are available.

Contact our meetings expert, Mary Patchin, at 888-895-3211 or [email protected]. With over 20 years of experience, Mary would love to help customize your next VIP regional meeting or event, provide resources, assist in securing facilities and coordinate site inspections. And be sure to ask her about our current meeting incentives! 

The Chicago Southland Convention & Visitors Bureau is the official destination marketing organization for the south metropolitan region. It represents 60 south and southwest Chicago suburbs. The Visit Chicago Southland coordinates sales and marketing of the Chicago Southland as a destination for meeting and conventions, sporting events, group tours (motor coaches), reunions and leisure visitors. For more information, visit our website at www.visitchicagosouthland.com

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