Rend Lake resort moves closer to reopening with proposal request
Area lawmakers are cheering news that the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) is hard at work looking for a new operator for the Rend Lake Resort and Conference Center in Franklin County.
The Rend Lake Resort and Conference Center operator's lease ended in December 2016, and the IDNR issued a request for proposals from a new concessionaire in mid-June.
“The Rend Lake Resort and Conference Center can serve as a shining light for southern Illinois tourism, and we are confident the resort can be a top destination for visitors from throughout the state and around the country,” IDNR Director Wayne Rosenthal said in a release.
State Sen. Dale Fowler (R-Harrisburg) said the reopening of the facility will be beneficial for the state.
“We are excited for the potential reopening of the Rend Lake Resort," he said in the release. "This is an important part of an overall plan to market southern Illinois to tourists, and even encourage our own neighbors to take advantage of all that our region has to offer. I am optimistic that the resort will be a bigger and better draw for visitors once again.”
State Sen. Paul Schimpf (R-Murphysboro) described the center as a big draw for area visitors.
“Sportsmen and anglers have flocked to the resort for many years, and it is imperative that the resort get up and going again," he said in the release. "Outdoor sports tourism is one of the largest draws to southern Illinois and we need to ensure that our park infrastructure is modernized."
State Reps. Dave Severin (R-Benton) and Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro) called the reopening an important event for the community.
“This place means a lot to the people that visit and to the people that live here," Severin said in the release. "The Rend Lane Resort and Conference Center is truly a jewel for southern Illinois.”
Bryant offered similar sentiments.
“Rend Lake Resort and Conference Center is one of the most valued tourist attractions in southern Illinois," he said in the press release. "I’m excited today because this announcement marks a new beginning. I want to encourage folks to invest their time and money into making this amazing attraction an economic engine for the region once again.”
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Harrisburg, IL 62946