Golf Tournament Ideas

Ideas For A Successful Charitable Or Fundraising Golf Event

The cornerstone of any charitable golf tournament planning or golf fundraising event is gathering as much money as possible for the worthy charitable cause. That was the reason the whole golf outing idea got started in the first place.

Why is golf such a driver in this category? Sheer numbers. In May 2018, the National Golf Foundation, the most trusted and preeminent provider of market research, marketing databases, business insights and programs that support every segment of the golf industry, provided startling numbers via its Golf Industry Report. The annual assessment showed that charitable golf tournaments are an important vehicle for charitable giving. Local, regional and national events accounted for the great majority of the $3.9 billion in annual fundraising by golf fundraising charity outings. That includes an average figure of $26,400 raised at more than 142,000 charitable events hosted by 84 percent of U.S. golf facilities.


Organizers are like mini-CPAs trying to monitor the bottom line on creating a revenue-generating model for the golf fundraising event, ensuring its one-year success and even a greater return in years ahead.

Revenue ideas derive from the maximum amount of players, sponsors from the title of the event all the way down to add-on competition and pin flags, auctions and donations. That must rise above expenses such as golf course greens fees, cart rentals, food, gifts and prizes, signage, a concentrated website and other auxiliary costs.

To drive toward a big turnout at your outing, organizers should promote at regional golf stores, involved parties’ business offices and other high-traffic, highly visible locations that might be interested in the cause or in golf. Developing a newsletter, a wide-ranging e-mail list and an engrossed social media campaign are also essential elements.

Sponsors provide one-stop shopping for income. Contact large corporations and local businesses and ask them to support the effort on varying levels, from title sponsorship to hole and contest signage. They’re looking to spread their names and will do so as long as they’re assured the cost is reasonable and the exposure is suitable (signs, social media, media, etc.).

Providing a valid organizational plan will help in this effort, with official letters, mockup of signage and a cost chart for their participation. Network through your organizing group to connect with executives at potential sponsoring companies.

Golf Fundraising Event Players

Contests out of the usual tee to green specs also provide added luster and more ways to gain funds. Conduct a putting contest, long-drive holes, closest to the pin shots, hole-in-one contests and even unusual promotions such as straightest drive or a shootout among long drivers and proximity winners.

Auction item ideas are another golf fundraising generator. Players before the event, and particularly afterward, are anxious to see types of cool features they can score at a discount and show their charitable means. The more advance exposure that can be given to these items, the more you whet the appetite of participants. Holding raffles also contributes in this category, with the thought in mind to get as much money in hand as the cost of the item.

Renting the golf course for your outing may seem like an ominous task. However, most golf courses provide a substantial discount for large groups, particularly if if it’s a charitable event or you can work out a weekday date where the course has lesser traffic or during afternoons in the heat of summer.

Abbreviated events, such as the idea of downsizing the course to just par-3 holes or at least converting half the course to shorter holes, could also be compelling to the course. That new sizzle may attract participants who recognize it will only take a half day’s involvement. Those formats will also allow the course to get people around faster, possibly creating a larger revenue stream for your cause and giving the course more playing opportunities away from your event.

All this comes together as a mixture to figure out your expenses vs. your revenue generators.

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