The members of Union County CC in Anna, Ill., voted unanimously to accept a proposal by William Cunningham to convey the real estate for the golf course property that he had purchased in 2006 back to the club. A county recreational complex, which the club will now manage, was also included as part of Cunningham’s charitable donation.
A local golf course and recreational complex have a bright future thanks to the generous support of a Union County, Ill. man, reported The Gazette-Democrat of Anna, Ill.
On July 30, members of the Union County Country Club in Anna unanimously voted to accept a proposal presented by William R. Cunningham of Anna and his attorney, John Bigler, also of Anna, to convey the real estate for the golf course property that Cunningham had purchased in 2006 back to the club, The Gazette-Democrat reported.
The country club, which was started in 1954, has about 120 members today.
In making his proposal, Cunningham indicated he continues to believe that Union County CC “is an asset to our community” and he expressed his desire to “see it remain a viable part of the community for many years to come,” The Gazette-Democrate reported.
Cunningham’s charitable donation also includes the Union County Recreational Corporation complex in Anna, which the club will manage. Cunningham added that he also sees the recreational complex as “a viable part of this community, and although a relatively new asset for the community, one that I hope can thrive for many years to come.”
Union County CC will utilize its recreational management experience, as well as its lawn care and grass turf management experience, to further develop and better maintain the recreational complex, The Gazette-Democrat reported.
Cunningham stated his desire that the club will manage the recreational complex for its intended purposes of promoting physical and mental health through sporting events and other recreational activities for the youth and citizens of Union County, including, but not limited to, the Union County Soccer League, Wildcat Youth Football League, Southern Illinois Baseball and Softball Association, and other educational and recreational activities for community groups or individuals.
Cunningham also expressed hope that the club will continue a youth golf camp that was initiated in 2006 and memorialized as an annual event in the country club’s bylaws, The Gazette-Democrat reported.
Jim Woodward, President of Union County CC’s Board of Directors, agreed that Cunningham’s action, which he said amounted to a gift with a value of over $1 million, is a positive development for everyone involved and for the community, The Gazette-Democrat reported. Woodward also recalled that Cunningham stepped up in 2006 to make a substantial financial commitment, through his purchase of the golf course land, when the club was facing a six-figure debt.
At that time, added Brandon Bierstadt, the club’s golf professional, the facility was in danger of closing, but Cunningham’s purchase allowed to club to continue to operate through a $1-a-year lease, and guidelines were set for how to keep the facility operating in the black for 50 years.
As part of that lease agreement, The Gazette-Democrat reported, the club was also was to host a free golf camp for Union County youth, and the most recent of those camps was held recently.
Bringing the country club and recreational complex will now be a win-win for the entire community, Woodward added, and further Cunningham’s desire to support young people. “He cares about kids,” Woodward said.
Union County is located in the southern portion of Illinois known as “Little Egypt,” because of its proximity to the city of Cairo, Ill. The entire population of Union County was set at just under 18,000 by the 2010 census.
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