For both Cynde and David Bunch, the visionaries of Walker’s Bluff, the soft rolling hills, fertile acreage and a heritage steeped in memories propelled the creation of Walker’s Bluff in 2008. Acquiring land that had been in Cynde Bunch’s family since 1934 was the first step toward what would become Southern Illinois’ premier dining and entertainment venue.
Their initial plan included building a modest home where they could enjoy the idyllic spring and summer seasons along with a small vineyard for David to experiment with his passion for wine made from California grapes. A small gazebo was added on the river bluff to host family reunions and weddings. The gazebo quickly became a Sunday retreat for local families who wandered out to enjoy the scenery, fish the stocked streams and, for some, satisfy their curiosity. Always the consummate hosts, they welcomed the steady stream of visitors enjoying their vista, and the positive feedback and community support gave way to the idea of creating an entertainment complex unequaled in the Midwest.
Philanthropy and giving back to the community have always been critical to the couple. Supplying jobs for over 200 people in addition to hundreds of local vendors and artists provided an avenue to give back to the Southern Illinois community.
Having achieved success by developing a national managed care company, Cynde and David took their entrepreneurial expertise and began construction on what would evolve into a luxurious resort of breathtaking scenery, gourmet cuisine and pleasurable pastimes.
Since its inception, guests have been drawn to Walker’s Bluff for its tranquility, style, unmistakable romance and fun family activities. Phase One development was completed in early 2012 and in addition to its vineyards, Walker’s Bluff currently has four venues in operation, The Gazebo, Legends, The Tasting Room/Wine Cave and General Store.
Plans for Phase Two include a large event center,, lodge and spa. The future is exciting, and the Bunch family look forward to continuing to be the gateway to the enchanting allures of Southern Illinois.