DANVILLE – After more than 18 years of the same owners, Turtle Run Golf Club and Banquet Center will see a change in ownership the day fireworks return to the facility.
Chris Heeren and Mike Shirey are in their 19th season of ownership at Turtle Run, 332 E. Liberty Lane.
Doug and Mindy Dawson will become the new owners on July 3.
Heeren said the Dawsons, who own Dawson Logistics, approached them and it was a tough decision.
“We had to contemplate it, and we’ve been here a long time,” Heeren said.
He said life happens and their children are getting older. They started to think about the opportunities it might provide for everyone involved.
“That was really exciting,” Heeren said. “We’ve been extremely fortunate with all of the support we’ve gotten from Danville. We agreed ‘let’s try it.’”
He said now the Dawsons can take Turtle Run to the next level with their ideas.
Heeren said the Dawsons have a passion for the city and a passion for entertainment. They’ve brought events already, such as Dueling Pianos, to Turtle Run and events to the David S. Palmer Arena.
He said the Dawsons “saw a good marriage and what they’d like to do and the culture we’ve created out here.”
“It’s only going to change for the better,” Heeren said.
The beginning of the transfer of ownership started a few months ago.
Mindy Dawson said they are excited to soon be the new owners of Turtle Run.
“We feel very grateful and blessed. Doug and I love Turtle Run,” she said. “We’re just excited to expand upon the footprint Mike and Chris already created.”
Mindy Dawson said there won’t be staff changes.
Customers are used to the service and the staff is used to the family atmosphere, Heeren said.
Mindy said because Turtle Run is such an established business with great service and a great quality golf course, the golf pro, superintendent and other staff won’t be changing.
That includes banquet manager Maggie Smith and chef Chris Stoner, Mindy said.
One area that will be changing, however, is the addition of a new outdoor venue area to be called Shimerren Landing.
The area will be where the pool was. There will be an outdoor activities area for music on certain nights of the week, where bands can play on the old pool sundeck area. The outdoor venue also will have fire pits, and they will possibly expand on the food menu and plans include craft beer coming to the old pool house building.
Heeren said they will utilize the space to make it even more family friendly and bring Danville more entertainment.
Mindy said the name of the outdoor venue space is a way for her and Doug to say thank-you to Mike and Chris for everything they’ve done. The name comes from Mike and Chris’ corporation name.
“We always wanted for Mike and Chris to have their footprint at Turtle Run for years and years to come,” she said.
Another change coming will be the resurfacing of the parking lot.
Mindy said July 3 will be a great celebration. The daylong event will start at 2 p.m. with live music all day, food, fun and fireworks at 9:30 p.m.
The first performer will be Julia Silver from Bismarck. She’s a senior in high school and has “an extreme amount of talent,” Mindy said.
Following Silver will be Kasey Burton, “a really great musician” who started with the First Gig Rock 'n Roll Camp here and signed with a record label in Nashville, Tenn. The other bands that day will be the Dalton Halls Band and Boat Drink Caucus with state Rep. Chad Hays.
There will be Moonburgers from the Moon-Glo, hot dogs, brats, French fries and other items including from the Custard Cup. There also will be Knockerballs and there will have a vendor selling glow bracelets and other items.
“It’s really Doug’s and my passion to make this a family-friendly event,” Mindy said.
She said the public is invited to a great atmosphere to come out and enjoy.
The cost for the July 3 event is $10 per carload for parking. That’s double the cost than in the past.
Heeren said fireworks displays are “extremely expensive” and it can only be done with the support of the community.
He said the fireworks show will be the best one yet for the facility.
City of Danville fireworks schedule:
• Danville Stadium on June 30 and July 4.
• Danville Boat Club on July 1.
• Danville Country Club on July 2.
• GAO Grotto on July 2.
• Turtle Run on July 3.