• SCGC Header 3 5 18

    Welcome to Stone Creek Golf Blog!

The Ultimate Golf Tournament Planning Guide

Are you ready to start planning a golf tournament?

Is this your first time planning a tournament? Or have you been planning for years to varying levels of success? Either way, Stone Creek Golf Club can help you plan the perfect event.

Golf tournaments can be a huge undertaking that require months of planning. This golf tournament planning guide will help you through timing, budgeting, formatting, promotion, and more.

Stone Creek Golf Club can help you plan everything from golf tournaments to weddings and banquets. Read on to learn more about this ultimate golf tournament planning guide.

Golf Tournament Planning Guide 

If you are new to planning tournaments, it may be difficult to figure out how and where to start. 

Make sure you have a clear purpose for your tournament.

Will your event be for a company, fundraiser, networking, or just for fun? Will there be prizes, gifts, or sponsors? These are just a few of the things you will need to nail down when you start planning.

You will need to build a timeline, budget, and promotional strategy. Most importantly, you will need to find golfers!

Start by putting together a realistic timeline. If you do not give yourself and your team enough time to put everything in place your event will feel rushed.

You will need to pick a date, reach out to sponsors, recruit golfers, and confirm food and beverage vendors.

Budgeting is also very important in planning a successful golf tournament. You should calculate an average cost per golfer and maintain multiple streams of income for your tournament. 

There are several different ways to monetize your tournament. Golfer registration fees should cover most of your costs but there are some other ways to cover costs and make some profit.

Side contests allow you to add some extra fun to the tournament by offering side games that participants have to pay extra for but they come with cool prizes and can be loads of fun.

You can also charge for food and drinks. Everyone gets hungry and thirsty on the ninth green.

Try offering advertising space to local businesses. This can be profitable for your organization and help build business relationships for future events.

Look for volunteers instead of paying a daily rate. Find people that want to be involved with your cause and love golf.

Tournament Format 

Once you have your plan and budget, it is time to figure out what type of tournament you want to have. Your format will depend heavily on the purpose of your tournament. This will also depend on the skill level of golfers you are planning to attract. 

There are many different forms of tournament golf. Some of the popular formats include, medal play which is for skilled golfers. The person with the fewest strokes wins.

Best ball is a team effort in which every golfer plays their own ball and each group uses the best score from each hole.

Scramble is a fun format in which each foursome plays the best shot of each team member through the entire course and records one score for every hole. This is a popular format for all types of tournaments.

The pro-am format pairs professional golfers with amateurs. These are great for fundraising tournaments.


Once you have planned and budgeted for your tournament you will need to promote your event. You will want to attract golfers and sponsors. Word of mouth is always a great way to market an event, but these days internet marketing is also necessary for planning a successful event.

You should create a quality website that will give your organization and your sponsors plenty of exposure. Here are a few more promotional tools that will help you plan a successful tournament.

Send a press release to local businesses and media outlets announcing your event.

Give away promotional items to encourage golfers to register for your tournament. Try offering gift bags, early-bird specials, and group discounts.

Print fliers to leave in the pro shop of your host course and at local businesses to help get the word out.

Search engine optimization can also help. If you have a decent marketing budget, SEO can go a long way in promoting your tournament online.

Tournament Day

You've done all the planning, budgeting, and promoting now the big day is finally here! Make sure your volunteers and employees are ready. You have all your sponsorship banners in place. Your side contests and prizes are ready to go.

Food and drinks are ready and now you are just waiting for the golfers to show up.

Make sure you also have photo and video opportunities set up. The golfers will want to take pictures and videos to commemorate this awesome day.

Once the golfers are out on the course, make sure you have rangers available to keep up the pace of play and enforce other course rules.

You will also want to make sure you have a stage or podium ready to congratulate the winners. During the award ceremony, you can also announce any side game prizes and raffle winners. You may want to hire an MC or host for this part of the day to make sure it's entertaining and fun.

Wrap Up

Once your tournament is over, there are a few tasks you will have to take care of before you can pat yourself on the back and relax. Make sure to help with clean up. The host course will be grateful if you do your best to leave the course in the condition it was when your organization arrived.

Collect fees and make any necessary payments in a timely fashion.  If you wait to collect fees due to you, it is unlikely you will ever receive them. If you wait to make the payments you owe, it will make it harder to plan your next tournament if the word is out that you do not pay on time.

Thank your host course, golf professionals, employees, wait staff, and volunteers. Now all that is left to do is plan for next year.

Click here to check out Stone Creek Golf Club and let them help you plan your next event!