Archive for July, 2015

Organising a charity golf day – Ten Top Tips…

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

Organising a charity golf day

So you’ve taken on the responsibility for organising a charity golf day and now you need some advice on how to make it run smoothly, it’s fun and at the end of the day, ensures it raises funds for the chosen charity…

We’ll having attended and arranged many days ourselves, here our top ten tips for organising a charity golf day or a society golfing day!

1. Organising a charity golf day – The Venue…

Arguably the most important decision you will make. The venue should be chosen based on the quality of the course and the green fee/meal cost but also on the location and reachability of your guests.

Whilst most golfers (and some non-golfers) will happily give up their day to attend your event, it’s unlikely that they will want to drive more than an hour, so bear this in mind when choosing the venue.

2. Organising a charity golf day – The Handicap System…

Again, a very important decision some will choose to follow the strict CONGU handicap system (which is only available to golf club members) OR you may wish to accept those with an online golf handicap certificate, like those provided by TSG.

Alternatively, if you are looking to run a simple ‘fun’ day, then you will have to accept handicaps based on trust. However, bear in mind if you choose the latter, then you may hear the odd ‘Bandit’ shout from some of your attendees on the day.

Organising a charity golf day

3. Organising a charity golf day – The Planning…

Ultimately, your focus has to be on your guests and those attending. Everything you do on the day goes toward the overall experience. Given that there are normally only a few winners of silverware at the event, it’s important to ensure everyone feels included.

It’s the little touches that will make your day stand out above others, so make sure you plan properly! Here are a couple of things to consider:

The Costs: Consider the amount of money you wish to raise and then work back from there. Make sure your calculation takes into account the cost to your guests and not just yours(!). Think about how far you are making guest’s drive (this is all part of their expenses). Check the cost of playing at the course on a normal day. Take into account the meal bill and of course, consider negotiating with the club.

However, don’t be greedy when setting the attendance fee. Too many people when organising a charity golf day, forget that they have to provide value as they are not only giving up their cash to support you but also their time.

All too often we hear of golf days being over-priced e.g. £70-80 (sometimes £90+) when the standard green fee is £20. A good guide is to make £10-15 per green fee going to the charity. However, we see no reason why you can’t make a day work at £45-50.

The Format: There are many options to choose from including standard Stableford format, Texas Scramble, Team Comp. Putting Comp. and a fun way to keep the group chatting is a Yellow Ball comp.

It is worth contemplating playing your golfers of a 3/4 Handicap or 7/8’s. This can be seen as a controversial move but one that is adopted by many organisers, as it levels the playing field and stops the ‘Trophy Hunters’, who ‘claim’ to play off 28 (but are really much better) from spoiling the day.

Finally, if you are playing team games and have a spare team of only 2 or 3. You can work around this by taking an average of the 2 or 3 players performance and that score represents the 3rd or 4th player in the team.

The Trophies: Will there be one winner or multiple winners? Will there be a separate Ladies comp? Consider adding a Straightest Drive (Longest Drive comp. often excludes many from winning), Nearest Pins, Nearest Pin in Two (second shot), a Secret Six Holes (unmarked on the cards), Beat the Pro and many more.

The Four-balls: Arguably the most important decision you will make is who plays with whom. Ensure you have an even spread of playing levels in each four-balls but also consider the personalities.

It’s no fun if you are a quiet player if your playing partners are a noisy and chatty bunch – it just won’t work. Equally, it’s important that your day is not ‘cliquey’. So don’t just puts mates with mates.

The Fund-Raising: There are many ways to increase your fund-raising outside of the days entry fee. It could be that gathering gifts and prizes to hold a raffle. Perhaps, you can ‘sell’ Mulligan Vouchers for £5 a time to be used on the day. It may also be an opportunity for a local business to add their name to things by way of a cash injection by way of sponsorship in return for some marketing around the event.

If you have some special prizes, consider holding an auction. However, don’t let either of these events take up too much time. 20 minutes is a good guide or people will lose interest.

Organising a charity golf day

4. Organising a charity golf day – The Day…

Registration: Welcome the guests with a designated area/table where you can confirm their arrival distribute the scorecards (it is often a nice if you have already marked the shots to be given to each player beforehand).

The Gifts: Water (if it’s a hot day), give out some tees, a ball marker, maybe a pitch repairer, perhaps a sleeve of golf balls?

The Tee Time Schedule: Print out a copy of the four-ball groupings for displaying on the club wall. This will prevent constant questions from everyone on with whom and at what time they are teeing off. Leaving you to concentrate on the registration

The Briefing: Prepare a welcome speech and ensure that you have checked any local rules at the golf club hosting the venue. Also inform the players of timings, meals times and if raising money, consider preparing a video to let attendees know where the funds will be going.

Marshalling: It is advisable to discuss the marshalling of the players while they are on the course. Arrange for a buggy from the club so you can follow your golfers as they go around the course.

‘Speed of play’ is always a massive issue when organising a charity golf day and make it clear to everyone how to prevent slow play.

Photography: If you have the time when marshalling, take the opportunity to photograph your guests (perhaps even take video). Once back at the clubhouse you can then show the images on a TV screen while the players are enjoying a post-round drink and meal.

This also provides a great talking point and can create a nice buzz among the golfers.

5. Organising a charity golf day – The Scoring…

If you have more than 30 players attending your day, ensuring you have enough time to do it. You can enrol the help of the club pro or a good trick is to only ask for cards with scores of 30 pts and above.

This will cut down the time you spend checking scorecards and give you more time to concentrate on the winners and any count-back calculations.

Have a copy of the main trophy made for the winner to keep. That way they don’t have to take the main trophy home, meaning it never gets lost, broken or worse unreturned!

Organising a charity golf day

6. Organising a charity golf day – The Fund-Raising…

You may decide to add a charity element to your day.

There are many ways to increase your fund-raising, it could be that gathering gifts and prizes to hold a raffle. Perhaps, you can ‘sell’ Mulligan Vouchers for £5 a time to be used on the day.

It may also be an opportunity for a local business to add their name to things by way of a cash injection by way of sponsorship in return for some marketing around the event.

Alternatively, if you have some special prizes, consider holding an auction.

However, don’t let either of these events take up too much time. 20 minutes is a good guide or people will lose interest.

7. Organising a charity golf day – Looking after the guests…

Let’s not forget, we all like being spoiled and catered for. To ensure your guests know where you are at all times and most of all take time to talk to them. A little conversation from the organiser can give a ‘personal’ touch to proceedings and makes the guests feel cared for and welcome.

8. Organising a charity golf day – Thank yous…

All the prizes have been given out, the meals finished, the raffle and auctions are over. Make sure you close the day by either asking one of your winners to make a speech, on behalf of the attendees OR summarise the day yourself by making a thank you to all those involved in gathering prizes, scoring cards, bar staff and greenkeepers.

You may wish to return to the club in future years and it’s just good manners anyway.

Organising a charity golf day

9. Organising a charity golf day – After the day…

It’s no surprise that in the age of digital technology at the fingertips of most us, everyone likes to see photos of themselves playing. So consider distributing the best of these by email after the day, giving you another chance to thank everyone for coming.

It also a nice opportunity for you to explain where some of the funds you have raised will be going, this maintains momentum and a feel-good factor for organising a charity golf day in future years.

10. Organising a charity golf day – Enjoy it!

Finally, don’t let it become a chore. At the end of the day, if everything runs smoothly you will be feeling proud of your efforts and humbled by having watched so many golfers having a good time.

However, don’t let yourself fall into the trap of thinking you can do it all yourself. Don’t be afraid of recruiting volunteers, even if just for the auction and raffles.

Raising monies for charity can be both rewarding and fun, so enjoy it!

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Looking for prizes for your own charity golf day? Contact theteam@thesocialgolfer.com and we will happily donate TSG Pro membership’s prizes to your charity golf day!

By Ian Mullins

Pro Tips – Chip like Seve…

Saturday, July 18th, 2015
Chip like Seve

The set-up…

Your driving well, your fairway play is coming on but your short game needs help? It’s time to improve the game from 150 yards and in and learn here how to ‘Chip like Seve‘… are you lacking that magical touch around the greens?

Let’s look at the basics of chipping along with something 90% of golfers do. (and I’ve seen this in some very low handicap players I’ve taught!)

Chip like Seve – The Grip…

– As normal (refer to “Pro tips – Summer golf” for a refresher)

– Hold half way down the grip to give more control and feel to the shot

Chip like Seve – Stance, Ball Position, and Posture…

– Firstly – make sure you do this in the order set out here

– Stance width will be approx. 1 foot apart and I’d like you to pull your left foot back a couple of inches – as shown right

– Position the ball opposite your sternum

– Now lean slightly to your left with your upper body – once you have moved, the ball should now be just behind your sternum – as shown below. This will allow us to make a slightly downward blow onto the ball giving you that crisp, spinning chip.

Chip like Seve – Swing Technique…

Chip like Seve

Swing technique…

When we chip the ball we want a consistent strike and consistent loft. Both of these help to judge distances as if you get these the same every time, all you have to do is vary the length of your swing to hit the ball different distances.

A big fault I see when I give a chipping lesson is the golfer will try to help the ball into the air, destroying the strike and giving very inconsistent loft. In the finish and through impact you will see the club get ahead of the hands – as shown right

Often this is because the golfer is trying to use the hands and wrists to control the distance of the shot. Not only does this make it incredibly difficult to strike the ball consistently and create consistent loft, but also makes it very hard to get a consistent speed through impact.

This happens, as our hands have fast twitching muscle fibres which are difficult to control – especially under pressure!

Chip like Seve – Feeling it….

I’d like you to feel like the shaft of the club moves in line with the sternum as you swing the club back. To give an example I’m going to use Luke Donald – sure you will agree – not a bad chipper!!

Luke Donald Chippin

Luke Donald Chipping…

See how the hands and sternum are pointing parallel to each other.

This shows the body is more in control of the swing and allows him from here to keep the hands very passive and let the chest turn the club through the shot.

Below we can see the finish position where the sternum, club, and hands are all pointing in the same direction. No flip, just a swing controlled from the chest!

Chip like Seve –  And finally…

– Feel the sternum move the club shaft back and through, and FEEL as though they stay in line through out.

So there you have it, get down the range and add some ‘Seve Magic’ to your game!

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By Andy Clissold – TSG Head PRO

The TSG OPEN Championship 2015 – The Winners…

Saturday, July 18th, 2015

TSG OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

TheSocialGolfer.com, the online social networking community for golfers celebrated its annual TSG OPEN Championship (in association with londongolfshow.com) at Bletchingley Golf Club in Surrey on 11th July 2015….

Celebrating its 5th year, the now much coveted Halliwell Cup (donated by stroke victim Ian Halliwell) was won by Harlow & Essex based TSG member Steve Slater, with the Ladies Trophy won by Blackheath & Kent member Judy Lilley.

The TSG OPEN Championship 2015…

The day was attended by over 40+ able-bodied and disabled golfers from all over the South East of England and from as far away as Poland and New Zealand. The winners on the day also donated all the monies raised on the day to their two selected charities; Grangewaters Outdoor Education Centre, providing activity-based ‘fun’ for 8-16yr olds in Essex and Bromley Sparks, a self-advocacy group run by people in Kent with a learning difficulties.

TSG OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

The silverware…

The tournament began with the usual briefing and course orientation but as well as the individual Stableford competition; there was a Yellow Ball event, Straightest Drive, 2 x Nearest Pins, Beat The Pro, a Putting Comp and Team Event. The event was sponsored by the London Golf Show.

The day’s events continued into the early evening with a dinner and raffle and we are very grateful to Alan Haywood and Steve Slater for their help on the day. Of course, we must also thank Anna Guss and Brigitte Lockwood for their wonderful donation of a day with them at Wentworth.

What our winners said;

Just a brief note to thank the guys at Bletchingley for taking good care of the TSGers again. Always made to feel welcome here, hospitality always top notch.  In the words of Steve Cookson the Head Pro, greens were ‘sporty’, is a bit of an understatement and proved much more of a challenge than usual. Dry and hard – good for long drives, not quite so good for short putts – Congratulations to winners in all categories!” Men’s winner – Steve Slater

“Heartfelt thanks to The Social Golfer for a wonderful day and all the organisation and time put into making it such a success…many thanks to Bletchingley for their hospitality and to Beat The Pro Ben for a cheery welcome and showing most of us how it should be done. I would like to nominate Bromley Sparks as my chosen charity. They are small and every little helps. I know they will be so grateful for the donation….hope to see a good turnout at the TSG Par 3 Championship at Pedham Place in August –  Bring it on!” Ladies winner – Judy Lilley

TSG OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

Some of the Winners…

The other results off 3/4 Handicap:

Mens – 2nd – Martyn Miller – 27 Pts, 3rd – Roger Hurcombe – 24 Pts

Ladies – 2nd – Ruth Brand – 24 Pts

Guest Trophy – John Benstead – 27 Pts

Other winners on the day included:

Nearest Pin – Barry Hill

Nearest Pin 2nd shot – No winners

Straightest Drive – Anna Guss

Putting Champion – Tom Hurcombe

Yellow Ball Comp – Steve Duffy, Martyn Miller & Judy Lilley

Team Event – Steve Duffy, Martyn Miller & Judy Lilley

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Other comments regarding the day included:

Ian Mullins, Managing Director of TheSocialGolfer.com said;“The event is now well established and whilst it wasn’t intended, Bletchingley is fast becoming the Augusta of the TSG OPEN Championship. As always we were hugely impressed with the way the club supported the event. It is key that we do we can also raise the profile of disabled golfers and this is the TSGers doing their little bit for the cause!”

“Would like to echo what Steve has said. It was a great day, well organised and thoroughly enjoyable. The course was very nice with some challenging greens which we were all tested on. Thanks Ian for organising this and I look forward to entering many more of these days and meeting up with the fabulous TSG members…..” – Martyn ‘Speedy’ Miller

“The  sunniest TSG OPEN Championship yet, the most challenging greens, a great crowd, an excellent organisation from Mr Mullins and as always a most pleasant welcome from Bletchingley staff. Lovely to see some new faces (and not so new), some friendly guests and a record attendance from TSG Ladies. Warm congratulations to the worthy winners, thank you to all those who contributed to making this a great day to remember. Vive Le TSG!”  – Brigitte Lockwood

“What a special event it was! Beautiful sunny weather, great crowd, great company for the game, good money raised for charities. And all very well organised….THANK YOU VERY MUCH 🙂 Congratulations to all the winners especially to Judy and Steve. Well done guys. See you all again next year!” – Anna Guss

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By Ian Mullins

Great Golf Deals – new site launched…

Thursday, July 16th, 2015

Great Golf Deals

We’re always keen to tell TSGers about the latest developments in the golf industry and today we want to tell you about a new website specifically targeted at the ‘Social Golfer’ & ‘Golf Societies’ offering great golf deals…

Formally Crazy Golf Deals the new website has been renamed GolfDealsGroup.co.uk, with plenty of new offers and is mobile and tablet friendly!

If you want to play a great courses but not sure where to look? These guys have got it all for you. Courses all over the UK at great prices, some include food, buggies or even range balls.

Also, there are offers on hotel stays including golf and lessons often also appear, meaning you can improve your game for a great price.

How to get great golf deals…

Simply locate the offer you wish to take up, click buy now and the voucher appears in your inbox. It’s simple. Ring the club, book your time and take your voucher as payment and Golf Deals Group do the rest.

GolfDealsGroup Website

New Golf Deals Group Website

Creating an account…

Set yourself up an account and you can access all your purchases from here and re-print any vouchers you require. We will also email you great golf deal offers as and when they become available, meaning you never miss out.

Referring a friend…

However, they also like to encourage golfers to share these offer with friends and there is an incentive for you to get your golfing buddies involved too. When they sign up and purchase, YOU get free credit to use on your next great golf deal offer. So, the more you refer the more money you get to spend.

Look out for e-mail offers…

As stated above, at least once a week Golf Deals Group send out their offers to you after you have signed up. So simply click on the offer and go straight to what you want to purchase, then maybe browse around the other locations to see if any of these take your fancy.

Partner offers…

Also, Golf Deals Group have some great partners that offer equipment, golfing holidays and much more.

PGA Professionals…

Golf Deals Group is owned by PGA Professionals so you know you are getting the real deal. No more scrolling through generic offer sites looking for great golf deals in amongst beauty products and teeth whitening!!!

Exclusive sign up bonus for TSGers…

Sign up here and receive a bonus to start you off with to use on your 1st offer – Great Golf Deals couresty  of… golfdealsgroup.co.uk

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