As a charity golf tournament organizer, it’s easy to feel limited by seasonality. Golf only offers opportunity in peak season, right? ...Not so fast!
What you may not have considered is the array of great options for hosting an indoor golf event that can be just as effective at bringing your supporters together for your cause. The possibility for year-round fundraising is far wider than you think.
Indoor “golf courses” with a virtual golf simulator and experiential restaurants like Topgolf are gaining popularity for their unique offering and year-round appeal. So much more than a fun Saturday with friends – they're the perfect opportunity to tap into bonus fundraising efforts during the off season.
Read on for the ultimate guide to hosting an indoor golf fundraiser – from your venue options through to planning tips:
The benefits of hosting an indoor golf fundraiser
There’s so much to love about hosting an indoor event:
Non-golfers can come to play! Playing a round of mini golf or taking a swing toward a virtual screen will be a lot less intimidating than a formal golf tournament for your non-golfer community. Indoor golf activities open up a whole new attendee bracket to raise more awareness for your cause.
Plus, your golf enthusiasts will love the practice. On the flip side, the avid golfers in your life are probably yearning to flex their drivers again. Give them a chance to get their swing on while staying dry and warm.
It helps keep your supporters engaged. Don’t wait a full year to bring your supporters together again! Hosting a mid-year indoor event is a great way to keep your cause top-of-mind.
It’s got year-round appeal. Like we mentioned, indoor events don’t leave you to the mercy of the season or weather. Host an indoor event – or a few! – as a bonus on top of your usual outdoor event.
Winter schedules can be less hectic. Minus the holidays, winter schedules tend to be a little less busy than summer ones. Take advantage of your community’s free calendars while bringing some active fun to the down months!
Where to host an indoor golf event
Photo credit: Topgolf.com
At an indoor golf simulator venue. Popping up all across the country, virtual golf simulators are composed of an enclosure and a screen with sensors that track a person’s golf swing. The sensors record the speed and direction of the ball or club, and the data is used to display a realistic simulation of the ball’s flight on the screen.
Venues often include options for group events, food and a bar.
At an indoor miniature golf course. The most family-friendly option! Host a small-scale “tournament” for all ages and skill levels with indoor mini golf. Locations often have fun themes like glow-in-the-dark or pirate shipwrecks!
Look for an indoor miniature golf course or golf simulator location near you on FindIndoorGolf.com!
At a Topgolf location. While Topgolf courses may be a little exposed to the elements, they are proudly “all-weather” facilities equipped with heaters for the winter.
Look for a Topgolf location near you on their website right here!
How to plan an indoor golf fundraiser
Planning an indoor event has fairly similar steps to planning a traditional golf tournament, with some possible tweaks here and there:
Set your goals. Setting goals is an important first step, so you and your committee members know what you’re working towards.
Some questions you can ask yourself:
What is the purpose of this event?
How much does this event plan to raise?
How many attendees and sponsors are needed to hit this goal?
Select a venue. Use our tips in the previous section to explore venue options and decide what’s best for your goals. Some things to keep in mind: venue capacity, attendee skill level, food and beverage options, opportunities to display sponsor logos and overall event support you’ll get from the location.
You can use our free Ultimate 1-Year Charity Golf Tournament Content & Communications Calendar to help guide your event marketing plans!
Secure sponsors. Explore your connections and identify organizations with similar values who would love the extra exposure from your event. Use our sponsorship request letter template to help seal the deal!
Execute. Host a quick meeting for volunteers and staff prior to the start of your event to review timelines and objectives for the day.
And remember to have fun!