With golf courses springing up in most cities, hosting a golf tournament could be the respite your city needs. Be it a charity event or club championship event, the success of a golf tournament depends on how well you turn it into a complete experience for the people involved. It is a huge undertaking with planning going back 8-12 months. For your investment of resources and time to be worth it, you should support it with meticulous planning. Once you figure out your target audience and the little things that make them tick, you can potentially be the rockstar who organized the smashing golf tournament.
In this post, we lead you step-by-step through the process of organizing a golf tournament. If this is your first time, these steps will lay down a solid foundation for hosting such events in the future. You can even use this as a to-do list and check off the points as you progress in the plan. Don’t dread the enormity of the task in front of you. It’s a thrilling ride and has a very satisfying end.
What You Will Need To Follow This Tutorial?
- Pen and Pad:
It always helps to write down things while organizing anything. No matter how good your memory is, in the rush of things there’s always something you’ll forget. Instead of letting such mistakes turn into last-minute glitches, it’s better not to make them at all.
If you are tech-savvy, consider using a tablet and backup your plans and data such that they are available to other devices like your smartphone and laptop as required.
Step by step instructions
Here’s how the cogs and wheels of a golf tournament are set into motion:
Step 1: Define The Purpose And The Targeted Group
Starting off, you must know why you are hosting this golf tournament. Is it a competition to find the golf champion in the area? Is it a charity event to raise money for a just cause? Is it a tournament for the winners of an online competition, the idea being to simulate a Masters event?
Once you define the purpose of the tournament, you have a clear picture of how big it should be, what would be the skill level of golfers who will play here and how serious the competition should be. These are basic decisions that affect the committee and resources you choose for hosting the event.
When the discussion on any aspect of the tournament goes tangential, you can use the main goal to bring it back on track. Identifying the goal of the golf tournament makes future decision-making process much easier.
Step 2: Put A Team Together
Try as you might, you can’t put a golf tournament up all by yourself or just you and our cousin Ed. You need manpower to look after different aspects of the tour.
- Start by appointing the main committee. Convey to them the full idea of your goal and vision.
- Branch out further and add committees to overlook finance, registrations, food and beverages, transportation, prizes etc..
- Have each committee appoint their own volunteers or have a single pool of volunteers from where each committee can pick the required manpower.
- Communicate the important goals to the teams and volunteers so that they make sound decisions. Hold the teams responsible for their areas so that they will embrace the challenge and work individually and in a group towards success.
Step 3: Fix The Budget
The scope and reach of the golf tournament will be decided based on the budget. For this, do a cost analysis of the different options available to you.
- Think of the scope of the tournament: citywide, region-wide or bigger.
- Think of the sponsors who would probably support you.
- Think of the golf courses you have at hand.
The key is not to overreach or under-deliver. If it’s the first golf tournament you are hosting, it’s best to be cautious in your outlay. Consider the food, beverages, transportation and other expenses connected with the tournament.
Step 4: Find Sponsors
Unless you have a secret stash of money set aside for the golf tournament, sponsors will be a great help in organizing it. The entry fees in no way will cover all the costs of hosting the tour.
- If you are holding a charity tournament, find firms and groups that are interested in your cause. They are more likely to donate. Also get the local community involved in the event.
- Find firms within your industry that are looking for Community initiatives and explain your cause to them.
- Most sponsors will grant you hole sponsorship. They will pay a sum in return for advertising them on a certain hole on the teebox. They may also sponsor the entire event and you return their goodwill by advertising them as gracefully as possible.
- You can take registrations from members of the sponsor firm or have their representative kick-off the event as a gesture of your camaraderie.
Step 5: Golf Tournament Format
There are different formats in which the winner of a golf tournament can be picked.
- The scramble is the most popular one for charity and small-scale golf events. It is played in teams where the best individual shot is selected on each hit for scoring the team.
- Golf marathon is another popular format for charity events. Here the players are asked to invite their friends, family, and acquaintances and collect a pledged amount. Then he/she plays 100 holes or something similar which qualifies as a marathon. As long as they fulfill their pledges, the golf is free.
- Best ball format is often chosen for more serious tournaments. Here, usually, a four-person team plays each hole. The best individual score for that hole becomes the score of the team. Alternate shot modified Stableford, Chapman Foursome is other popular formats.
- Try to find a format the players and the targeted audience will find enjoyable and challenging and one that fits your budget.
The registration process, the equipment required, the course difficulty, the registration structure etc. change based on the format you choose.
Step 6: Select the golf course
Golf courses are carefully designed by the architects these days. If the natural terrain doesn’t offer the difficulty they expect, they create their own new topography. Some courses are much harder than the others. Check our reviews about best golf course in the Dallas - Fort Worth or Scotland
- If the course is too hard, the players might not enjoy it. They may take up 6-7 hours to scale the course. Lengthening out the event will mean more expenses and audience frustration.
- Check out the green fees or charges levied by the course authorities for holding such an event. It should fit in the budget allocated to green fees.
- You need a location that’s centralized for the local crowd. Most people will not want to drive more than 1-2 hours to reach the course. And if you are arranging transportation, you want to cut down the costs.
Step 7: Advertising the golf tournament
For the golf tournament to be a success, you must have capable golfers on the turf. The spectators will stay engrossed only if the players give each other a tough competition.
- Get the committee members, volunteers and the local community to contact their acquaintances and bring in interested golfers.
- Use social media, newspapers, fliers, radio, public announcement etc. to market the event. Also mention the perks for spectators.
- Start out advertising on social media early. Build up the enthusiasm for the event once the base plan is in place.
- Time the event on a day when people don’t have to take leave from work or forgo important commitments for the tournament.
Source : www.victoriahospice.org
Step 8: Registrations and paperwork
Once the game is afoot and you start receiving registrations and interested spectators.
- If you are handing out goodies like T-Shirts and other items, make sure you get the sizes from the intended recipients.
- Based on the number of players, communicate the requirements to the golf course so that they can make necessary arrangements.
- Anything that’s worth recording should be put in paper or digital mode for audit after the golf tournaments.
Step 9: Accommodation for the players
If the players are traveling from outside the city, you must make lodging arrangements for them.
- Discuss with the budget team how many people per player you can afford lodging for. Convey the same to the players so they can decide who they would like to bring.
- Find hotels within 20 mins drive from the golf course. You can suggest these to the players should they decide to book their own lodgings. Make sure you cover a reasonable range of budget.
Step 10: Food and beverages
One of the top attractions of a golf tournament is the dining. Enjoying great food from the stalls in open air feels like a vacation from the monotonous life. Make sure this experience is worth it to the spectators and players alike.
- Designate caterers for preparing and serving food for the event. Talk to the golf course liaison and figure out the do’s and don’ts in terms of food. Check if the golf club itself is capable of catering the food for the entire event.
- Some courses allow open-air barbecue and grills. Make use of this opportunity to dish out some spicy and hot delicacies.
- Serving alcohol during the tournament almost never ends well. You can talk to the course authorities to figure this out.
Step 11: Contests and Curios
A successful golf tournament revolves around a crowd that enjoyed the tournament. Since it’s a slow game, golf by itself is not enough. There must be other things to hold the attention of the crowd. Hold some contest to make the event worth remembering for the spectators. Using a small entry fee, you can even raise charity money from the contests.
- Have stuff like a photobooth for people with a prop shop. Let them make memories at the tournament.
- Give away as many prizes as possible without compromising on the charity money you raise. Usually the sponsors pay for such small giveaways.
- You can give away golf-related prizes to the enthusiasts like a sleeve of golf balls, autographed memorabilia etc..
- Have a golf legend attend the tournament. This gives the golf coaches and students in the area to talk to them.
Step 12: Photography and Video
You must have something to remember the golf tournament by. Especially if you are planning to repeat the event yearly, you must have some beautiful snaps of the past season to put up on the website or social media pages.
- Make sure that the photos and videos include the pictures of sponsor banners. This will create a feel-good vibe amongst the sponsors when you approach them next time.
- Photos of the Winners along with their grand prize will be highly motivating to participants in the next season.
- Have a dedicated photographer for the players.
Step 13: Prizes
Allot a reasonable portion of your budget for the top prizes.
- Make sure it’s something valuable and useful to the winning players.
- If you don’t have a great budget, go for a large ostentatious trophy that the winner will be happy to brag with.
- It’s better not to give them items like tickets to a random game or something like that alone which they can’t show off.
- But feel free to be creative and make the prizes as imaginative as possible.
Step 14 + 15: Beyond the golf tournament & Loosen up
Beyond the golf tournament
It’s always great to let the players unwind after the game. Take them for a round to the nearest bar or have an after-game party at the clubhouse. But let them depart with pleasant memories regardless of whether they win or not.
It’s a fun event after all. It should be fun for everyone including you.
A handy trick to get immediate assistance during the golf tournament is to have the volunteers and committee members have a dress code. Easily visible colors with tags for the necks will make them stand out and make the management easier.
Planning and Organizing a golf tournament can be a highly rewarding experience when done right. You will be bringing together a whole crowd of people and putting up a show of sorts for them. Right from the inception of the idea to its execution, you have to be
- Organized in order to handle all aspects of holding the tournament well.
- Networking. This is not a one-man job. The more you draw people to help you, the better your tournament will be.
- Deeply perceptive of the players’ and crowds’ comfort and expectation. To make the golf tournament a success, the people involved should enjoy it but not at the cost of the integrity of the game.
We hope that you enjoyed this tutorial. Let us know your views in the comments. We have more posts on all things golf. Share our link or this article with your friends and help them evolve with golf too.