How to Run a Golf Scramble Event (After the Golfing)

Golfers at event

In this brief article I will cover awards presentation through post-event processing for a golf scramble fundraiser.

After the Golfing Is Complete

If you are running a small to medium sized golf scramble, there will likely be several teams that finish more than 30 minutes ahead of your slowest teams if you have a fair number of high or no handicap (golf) players. You will want to encourage these people to go ahead and eat, but to be patient for the remainder of the contestants to finish. This is the point where if you are not giving away a lot or a decent amount of quality door prizes that golfers will leave early if their team did not do well. There’s nothing you can really do at that point, other than to know up front what to expect if you had to go on the cheaper end for your prizes.

As the golfers arrive from the course, you will want to grab yourself a quick bite to eat, but not linger too long. As the event organizer, you will need to ensure the course manager is posting scores as they arrive, the caterer isn’t going to run out of food, and that your prizes are ready to be awarded and in some sensible order for you to present. This is also a good time to make sure you have a copy of the roster that actually showed for the tournament. Many teams will have replacement players for ones who pre-registered for the event and you want to avoid introducing someone with the wrong name!

Once your last team is seated and eating is usually the best time to start the awards presentation. I recommend doing your place prices first, followed by individual, followed by door prizes. You should also make it clear in your original advertisement and earlier the day that golfers must be present to win a door prize.

Once the last prizes are handed out, your crowd will dissipate somewhat. Once you’ve had about 2/3’s of the contestants depart is generally the polite time to start the large-scale cleanup of the event and settle your bill with the course manager for the golf scramble. Don’t forget to sell back any excess beer and soda you have from the event if the course has agreed to this.

Post Tournament

Many golf scramble organizers seem to muck up the post tournament processing. Typically at a minimum, you should plan to provide at least an email summary to your participants summarizing the prize winners, funny anecdotes for the day, thank them for their support, and either include low resolution pictures or a url to where they are stored online. You will be amazed at how far this will go to getting repeat golfers for the next event you decide to arrange (even if its not golf). You may also want to consider submitting your write-up to your local newspaper if you can have it completed in a reasonable timeframe after the event and have a few high quality pictures to provide the newspaper for use.

Your final action in the post tournament processing is to do a consolidated tally of your expenditures versus income for the event to see what you have left to donate to charity, the next event, or other general purpose for your organization.

What Wasn’t Covered

Likely you will run into at least several items not mentioned. I have run 4 tournaments now, and no 2 have been the same fully. Issues that I did not cover were:

Corporate Sponsorship – Provides the organization with greater resources, but can come with many catches legally depending on what organization you are working for.

Division of the Place Teams Into Flights – Typically used for tournaments in excess of 100 players. The simplest means is to divide the results in half and award first, second, third places in each

Division of Teams by Skill Level – Typically found in Golf Scrambles with major corporate sponsorship to prevent teams from ‘stacking the deck’ with 4 scratch golfers. These usually require a USGA handicap and divide players into skill level categories (typically A, B, C players with C being the worse ones).