If you are from the area and are anything like me, then you definitely have memories from Turtle Run. From the golf course to Snappers to the countless events held in the banquet hall – if you live in Danville – Turtle Run has touched your life in some way. One of the people behind the scenes who works hard to bring us those memories is Chris Heeren.
In 1999, Chris, along with two business partners had a vision to turn the Elks Club into a laid back, family oriented, family business that was open to the public. Since then, Chris and co-owner Mike Shirey have gone from best friends and golfing buddies to running a “small city” on several acres of beautiful property at 332 E. Liberty Lane, Danville, IL. After buying the business, they went to work putting grass on the golf course and renovating every detail of the banquet hall, bar and grill, and pool. Turtle Run also was the first golf course in the country to have a cemetery on site. Chris laughed that Turtle Run can “marry you and bury you!” In 2007, the guys added to the illumines scenery by adding the $150,000 pavilion (which they built themselves) outside of Snappers where you can cool off, have a drink and enjoy the ambiance of the great outdoors.
Along with his fiance, Melissa, Chris loves the outdoors and the abundance of it that Vermilion County has to offer. From hiking and biking at Kennekuk and Kickapoo to tubing and fishing on Lake Vermilion – Chris is amazed by the many “hidden gems” that people do not seem to know about. One project, in particular that he is excited about is the Kickapoo Rail Trail. The trail will be a 24.5 mile multi-use recreational trail that runs from Danville to Urbana. Chris and his family also frequent the trails just outside of his Maywood neighborhood near Harrison Park. The trails are open to the public and allow hikers to explore the outskirts of Danville.
As well as enjoying the outdoors, Chris frequents the American Legion Post 210 where both he and Melissa’s kids have played ball, attends countless show choir and cheer-leading events, and enjoys the outdoor concerts in Downtown Danville during the summer months. Chris also just came off of a 9 year service on the Presence Foundation Board. You may have seen him as Santa Claus in the Polar Express for the Festvial of Trees for the last twelve years.
It is a wonder that Chris has time to do anything outside of Turtle Run with all of the amazing up-coming events:
Friday, February 19th is Turtle Run’s 1st Bridal Bonanza. This event is described by Chris as doing a bridal show “the Turtle Run way”. Instead of just the bride and her mother attending a bridal show, this is for the entire bridal party. Get the guys involved! There are giveaways, fun, a cash bar, and “out of the box” ways to preview the party that will be your wedding.
Saturday, February 20th Turtle Run teamed up with Dawson Logistics and are bringing back The Dueling Pianos. Doors open at 6pm.
Saturday, February 27th is the Danville Firefighters’ 7th annual Texas Holdem Tournament. This event gives the winner a $10,000 seat to play in the World Series of Poker tournament in Las Vegas! For more information, please visit the Danville Firefighters.
You can learn more about what is coming up at Turtle Run here. Along with their many great events, Turtle Run is also renovating their pool area this summer. They will be featuring more of a “water park” feel that will be a great place to lay in the sun and let the kids play in the water.
Danville is lucky to have Chris Heeren and his family as part of our community. He supports Danville and is proud of what our Mayor has been doing over the years, making our city a better place. Let’s support a guy who is team Vermilion County all the way!
Peace & Love,
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