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O’Connells Jellystone Park – Amboy, IL


We rented a golf cart for 10 minutes. They came to the swimming pool and publically took it back from us because we allowed our 4 year old grandson to drive. He sat in his grandpa’s lap and pretended to drive. He is 36″ tall so it is fairly obvious he couldn’t really drive the golf cart he couldn’t reach the pedals.

was no explaining this and they kept our deposit for this reason as well. They were willing to ignore the circle of 10 drunks swearing and playing their music loudly at 11:30 AM in the presence of a pool full of children. They also ignored a group blasting their music that could be heard 3 roads over where we were at.

We expected a nice family place with lots of activities for the kids. The staff was horrible. Don’t take your kids there, it isn’t family friendly.

  1. virgie casas says

    We stayed at Jellystone this weekend because people said it was a nice place. OMG, is all I can say. This place is a dump! Our site was a dirt patch, no grass at all. Our electrical hookup only had one socket that had to be shared w/ 3 sites. Thank goodness, we had a heavy duty multiple socket extension cord with us or we would have been out of luck! The water is well water that smelled like sulfur. The bathrooms are disgusting, they look like they haven’t been cleaned in months. Urine and feces on the floor! The showers were also disgusting. The shower head and the handles hand layers of God only know what film on them. The shower walls and floors were full of hair and rust, calcium, and mold deposits!

    The pool was filthy and full of human hair as well as dead beetles!

    I realized that they cannot control mother nature but please clean up after her. They have 2 lakes and both lakes are having major issues. There were thousands, yes thousands, of dead fish on the lake and on the shore. The fish are rotting and the stench was unbearable. They made no attempt to clean up the mess. And who knows what the heck is wrong with the water that made thousands of fish die all at once?

    We were there for 1 night even though we paid for 3. We packed our gear and left. First and last time to this campground. Never, ever again.

  2. Unhappy camper says

    We stayed at O’Connell’s the weekend of July 29th. To say the least we will never go back! We go to many Jellystone parks in Wisconsin and love them. This one was dirty and just disgusting! Several times toilets were backed up, and toilet paper was missing. The Golf carts are out of control! It took me 5mins to back my van out of the camp store due to all the golf carts zooming by! On top of that the weekend we went was very dry. The roads are all dirt and gravel. Dust from the cars and golf carts going buy covered everything in site! This is by far the worst Jellystone park I have been to.

  3. Sherri says

    Im so sorry but rules are rules and everyone must follow them. A license is required to drive a golf cart… so be it and even then I think people driving reckless through the park should not be allowed to drive them either. They need to take down the O’Connells good name from the sign because since they sold to a corporation located in Chicago I have seen more rules being broken and the park doesn’t seem to be as clean either. Our family just got back from a seven day stay and every night at quite time which is 11:00pm it was never quite at all. Children were allowed to run through other sites screaming and yelling, others were drinking and being loud at 4:00am. Security told them to quite down and that didn’t even work. I believe at some point they need to tell certain people who don’t want to follow the rules that they will be banned from coming here then. I was very shocked to see the bathroom and showers how dirty they were. They were so must cleaner when O’Connells was running the show. I sure do miss them and Im sure others do as well.

  4. Gama says

    We were guests of Jellystone this week and to say the least, we were very disappointed. We rented Cindy’s Cottage A and I was so grossed out by the crusted hair in the drain of both showers, the heavily stained carpeting, the awful smell of the water and the old mildew smell of the entire cottage. The unit looked like it had not been updated in 30 years! Please please update and clean thoroughly, removed all carpeting and replace with laminate flooring with throw rugs. Much more easier to keep clean. We wore our shoes the entire time. Did not let my grandkids touch the carpet or couches. The miniature golf was really run down and the prices in the store were crazy. The new owners need to pay attention to their investment.

  5. kat says

    You were disappointed, just as we were. They try a little too hard to keep law and order, and it kind of ruins it for people who want to be free. I know it is a safty issue, but a warning would have been nice of them :). Unfortunately we haven’t been lucky enough to EVER get a warning, it is just police duty, that’s all and you will always get a ticket there. The staff has changed, so I do hope you will try it again there. We are, because it is a lovely place, just in need of some tuning up with the staff, and I believe they have done just that. Hope this helps someone.

  6. Nancy Taz says

    Gee – I am an annual camper at O’Connells and have to tell my daughter over and over that NO she can’t drive our golf cart, even though she sees other people doing it. I have to explain this is against the rules and is part of the rental contract that you sign. We still manage to have had years of fun at O’Connells and will continue until she is a legal driver.

  7. coc says

    Please keep in mind the O’Connell Family sold the campground 4 years ago. The company that owns it now is located in downtown Chicago. The service has chagned sinced the sale.

  8. Pam Case says

    I can’t help but think that you are either not the camping type or one who doesn’t like to follow rules. I know how hard it is to disappoint children/grandchildren but there’s a lesson to be learned there. We have been taking our grandkids there for at least 15 years. Never a complaint or a disappointment. The O’Connells and their staff are wonderful. We rent golf carts which the kids would love to drive and when they are old enough they probably will. Perhaps you should go to a campground that is not camperfriendly and then see what you think. And remember, if we want our kids to follow rules we have to set examples.

  9. Thistle Dew says

    Unless your family had been first…

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