Neil Maurer is the PGA director of golf and club operations at Bear Trap Dunes in Ocean View, Delaware.
Neil Maurer on the importance of hosting Mystery Tour outings:
After visiting my friend, PGA Professional Jim Larkin, at Fieldstone Golf Club in Delaware, I borrowed one of his ideas to help my women members get excited more about golf. I started offering a trip called the Mystery Tour in which my PGA Professional staff of four and group of women (usually totaling 12-16) go golfing for the day, but with a catch: The women don’t know where they will be going until our bus arrives at the destination! I rent out a limo or a bus and the women like to make guesses along the way. We provide drinks on the bus along with music to sing along to. When we arrive at the mystery course, we all play in a small competition, involving a payout of golf shop credit to the top two groups. After golf, we eat at the course’s restaurant to support our host. After dinner, we hop back into the bus where there are more drinks and sometimes even karaoke contests.
Neil Maurer on the business impact of hosting Mystery Tour outings:
The cost varies depending on our host facility’s cost, but we usually charge between $75-100 per person, which includes food and beverage, transportation and golf shop credit. When I call area courses to arrange the event, I offer a trade for the rounds: If they host us for golf and we stay for a nice plated dinner, we will allow them to do the same thing at our facility. This trade minimizes costs and brings in revenue from food and beverage at both facilities. We have done this twice now and both times the registration filled up within the first day. In addition to helping area facilities and helping my golf shop sales via the prize credit, the largest impact that this event has created is stronger relationships with the women members. It is a chance for me and the other PGA Professionals to grow close with members who we may not know that well, and a chance for the members to meet and play golf with other members. It is amazing to see how close you can bond with one another during the span of one day, a few drinks, and a fun round of golf.
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