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Tips Tuesday: Mastering the Art of Golf Event Planning

Over 33.1 million American viewers tuned in to watch professional golf last year, proving that this is still one of the most sought-after event types in the country. Whether you’re planning a tournament or a...

Over 33.1 million American viewers tuned in to watch professional golf last year, proving that this is still one of the most sought-after event types in the country. Whether you’re planning a tournament or a charity drive, all golfing events require a timeline and checklist to ensure they run smoothly.

How to Plan a Golf Event: Adding Your Unique Spin

Like most events, understanding the golf event type is crucial. It's important to know what audiences love about it and what you can do to give it your own unique spin. Most golf event ideas involve low-key award ceremonies, but you can also include traditional event add-ons like putting or hole-in-one contests, or even a catered meal for players.

Besides these theme specifics, you’ll have to use other event best practices such as partnering with vendors and sponsors, marketing your event, and registering attendees. With a little help, you’ll be able to master this event type in no time. So without further ado, here’s the only golf tournament planning guide you’ll ever really need.

How to Come Up With Great Golf Event Names

What is your golf event really about? Whether it’s a charity or just a good time, golf events are rarely just about the sport itself. So when naming your event, it should give attendees a sense of what to expect if they sign up. And because this event is all about playing a game, there should always be a sense of fun to the name, even if it’s for a corporate crowd.

Golf Event Caption: Hell 2 Heaven Golf Challenge - A unique amateur competition.

The Essential Golf Outing Checklist

Golf Event Checklist Caption: A checklist for a successful golf event.

There are some minimum requirements all golf events need to be a success. The great thing about this event type is that you can often find eager volunteers and free or donated goods to fulfill your golf outing checklist, especially if you’re fundraising for a good cause.

Here are some essentials you'll need for a great golf event:

  • A golf course
  • An event team and/or day-of volunteers
  • A tournament format
  • Sponsors
  • A list of potential golfers
  • A marketing strategy
  • Event insurance
  • An event photographer
  • Trophies or awards for the winners
  • Directional and promotional signage
  • Water and snacks for players
  • Golf event management software
  • T-shirts for participants and/or volunteers

And if you're looking to go above and beyond, you can hire caterers to prepare a delicious lunch, offer more extravagant prizes, or even provide goodie bags to participants.

Best Golf Event Planning Software & Tools

Your event is only as good as the tools you use to plan it. So make sure you have these or other similar event planning helpers with you as you begin to figure out your next big golf event.

  • Social Tables: A free event management solution for event planners at any experience level.
  • Event Caddy: Offers tools to organize, manage, and promote full-on tournaments.
  • BirdEase: Helps set up a dedicated and professional-looking e-commerce website.

Now that you know what to expect and have the necessary tools, let's dive into the nitty-gritty of planning a golf event.

Your New Golf Event Planning Template & Timeline

Some people start planning golf events 9 months out, but even if you have only 6 months until the big day, you can still hit all the points on this golf event planning timeline. Customize and adjust it as needed.

1-6 Months: Big Picture Items

  • Create your event goals
  • Draft your golf event budget
  • Decide on the event format and extra games/entertainment
  • Personalize the event timeline template
  • Meet with your team and assign tasks
  • Select a golf course and set the date
  • Set up pricing and sponsorship options
  • Choose golf event planning software
  • Set up an event registration website
  • Purchase event insurance

3-6 Months: Getting the Word Out

  • Choose a catchy golf event name
  • Send save the date notices to sponsors and potential players
  • Begin selling sponsorship packages and update your website
  • Promote the event on social media and distribute a press release

1-3 Months: Nailing Down the Logistics

  • Recruit and organize day-of volunteers
  • Finalize sponsor purchases and collect payments
  • Gather necessary items for raffles, auctions, and gift bags
  • Order event signs, posters, banners, and t-shirts
  • Book a golf event photographer
  • Review event plans with the chosen venue
  • Choose a credit card processor or money collection system

2-4 Weeks: Check In & Adjust Where Needed

  • Review sponsorships sold and adjust goals if necessary
  • Confirm delivery of event items
  • Double-check all logistics

1 Week: Finishing Touches

  • Send out official event reminders
  • Confirm volunteers and vendors
  • Prepare any last-minute decor or entertainment items

Day Of the Event: You Totally Got This!

  • Set up registration area and decor
  • Communicate with volunteers and distribute t-shirts
  • Set up extra event activities
  • Ensure golf measuring and tracking devices are ready
  • Stage golf carts and goodie bags
  • Offer sign-ups for next year’s event
  • Celebrate your success!

Congrats, you did it! Planning a golf event is similar to planning other events. With the right tools, strategy, and understanding of attendee expectations, you can create a completely original and fun golf event of your own!

For more event planning inspiration, check out these related posts:

  • 15 Most Common Event Planning Problems and Solutions
  • 6 Experiential Event Planning Trends & Ideas
  • Must-Know Event Planning Terminology