Eleven Tips for a Successful Golf Event


Hosting and growing a successful event can be challenging. We have collected the insights of a few of our golf event planners to provide you with tips to make your event a success.

Todd Nagel Open

The Todd Nagel Open is an annual golf outing taking place in Shakopee, MN. Created by Linda Nagel in 2007, the event honors the memory of her husband Todd who passed away from melanoma. Since its inception, the event has raised more than $85,000 towards skin cancer education efforts and melanoma research. Learn their strategies to organize successful events:

    1. Tap Your Workplace as a Resource: Your workplace can provide valuable support to your event. For example, the Todd Nagel Open is championed by Linda's employer Johnson & Johnson who matches charitable gifts and has a large number of employees participate.
    2. Build Your Brand: The Todd Nagel Open has grown to be an annual tradition that individuals look forward to months in advance. By consistently delivering a fantastic event, participants are excited to take part year after year.
    3. Consider Online Registration: Having an online event registration form simplifies the sign-up process for the event holder and attendees. Linda Nagel relies on this to fill the spots in her event and easily keep track of participants.
    4. Engage Those Who Cannot Attend: Why limit your fundraising efforts to individuals participating in your event? The Skin Cancer Foundation can create a fundraising website for your event. Like the Todd Nagel Open, you can direct those who cannot attend the event, or individuals who care about the cause to support your efforts online.

Learn more about the Todd Nagel Open

Tee Off for "T"

A new golf outing in 2014, Tee Off for "T" had an incredibly successful inaugural event. Organized by Diane Tirado, the event was highly successful through a combination of corporate sponsorships and working with friends, family, and local businesses to minimize costs and maximize their impact in the fight against skin cancer.

    1. Secure Deals with Your Local Course: When setting up your event with your local course, check to see if they offer specific discounts to charitable events or seasonal rates. Doing so can significantly lower your overhead costs.
    2. Cover Event Costs with Donations: Tee Off for "T" asked individuals to either make a charitable donation to play, sponsor foursomes, support a key component of the event, or donate raffle gifts and items for a silent auction. For example, multiple participants covered the cost for breakfast, breakfast bar luncheon, and beverage cart. Be sure to specifically mention/honor individuals for their contributions to show your appreciation!
    3. Engage Your Guests with Raffles, Auctions & Gift Bags: Prizes and gifts are fantastic elements to excite your guests and reward their participation. Attendees of Tee Off for "T" received a tournament golf shirt and a gift bag donated by a local business. Raffles for prizes were sold throughout the day starting with registration. Raffle tables were also set up at holes to win sponsored items. Live auctions items were also a huge hit with event participants.
    4. Recruit Local Businesses as Sponsors: Every hole on the course can potentially be sponsored by local businesses. By setting up various sponsorship levels, you can give business opportunities to spread the word about their work as well as giving back to the local community. Tee Off for "T" even had a hole where you could win a free car if you could sink a hole-in-one.

Birdies for Skin Cancer

Not all golf fundraisers have to involve a tournament. In 2011, 12-year-old Emilia decided to personally fundraise to support the mission of The Skin Cancer Foundation to educate the public about the dangers of skin cancer. Since she began fundraising, Emilia has received more than $5,000 in pledges and donations.

    1. Leverage Your Contacts: Ask friends, family, and co-workers to donate and spread the word. Emilia sent a flyer to her friends and family asking them to pledge one dollar for every birdie (a score of one under par in golf) that she made during golf tournaments
    2. Set a Fundraising Timeline: If you are fundraising as an individual, set a specific amount of time that you will be fundraising. While Emilia fundraised all year-long, your efforts can span from a few weeks to a few months.
    3. Fundraise Based on Your Skill Level:  Emilia knew that she could successfully fundraise by leveraging her ability to finish holes under par. You can find unique ways fundraise regardless of your skill level. Other ideas include having individuals donate every time you make a drive onto the green, or for each hole where you avoid hitting a sand trap or water hazard.

Learn more about Birdies for Skin Cancer

Ready to Get Involved?


For more information on hosting a fundraising event, please email us at bhanley@skincancer.org or call 212-725-5176.