Within view of the St. Louis Gateway Arch, Frank Holten State Recreation Area is an ideal destination for outdoor recreation in an urban setting in East St. Louis. The 1,080-acre St. Clair County park features the 18-hole Grand Marais Golf Course, two lakes for outstanding fishing, and plenty of open space for picnicking and other outdoors fun. The site is named for the late Frank Holten, who served the region in the Illinois General Assembly for 48 years.
The park features woodlands of Scotch pine, maple, oak, poplar, sycamore, tulip, redbud and wild cherry trees, blossoming flowers and bushes, and urban wildlife.
Frank Holten has one of the largest day use areas in the region, with picnic shelters, barbecue pits, and drinking water. The two lakes - Whispering Willow Lake and Grand Marais Lake - total more than 200 acres of water and 5 miles of shoreline. Whispering Willow Lake is stocked with largemouth bass, bluegill and channel catfish. Boat and bank fishing is allowed (10 horsepower limit for boating).
Frank Holten has two lakes - Whispering Willow Lake and Grand Marais Lake - with a combined water surface of 208 acres and 5 miles of shoreline. Wispering Willow Lake was rehabilitated in 1983 and stocked with largemouth bass, bluegill and channel catfish. Boat and bank fishing is allowed, but boat anglers must use trolling motors or motors no larger than 10 horsepower. Daily creel and length limits are in effect for some sport species. Anglers are advised to check with the site for special regulations before fishing.
Boat launch ramps are available on Wispering Willow and Grand Marais lakes.
The 18-hole Grand Marais Golf Course, an athletic field, cross country course, basketball courts and a baseball diamond are among other attractions at Frank Holten.
Season hunting programs are offered at the site.
Frank Holten has one of the largest day use areas in the area. The park area consists of picnic shelters, barbecue pits, sanitation facilities and drinking fountains, and can accommodate up to 2,000 patrons per day, with adequate parking for all.