Maine Golf Play Days are fun and competitive one-day events that give members the chance to play at golf courses all around the state of Maine. From April to October, we offer men’s and women’s one-day tournaments open to players of all abilities. All players that belong to a Maine Golf member club and have an active Handicap Index® are eligible to play in these fun events.
While these tournaments are more laid back and informal than our championship events, by no means are they without fun and competition! Play Days take place all across the state and have varied formats throughout the season to keep things interesting from spring to fall.
Men’s Play Day Registration Process
Updated March 27, 2023:
After years of altering the process of signing up for men’s Play Days, we are changing the registration process once again. This is it! Final!
The new registration process eliminates:
- Computer roulette at 7:00 am on play day sign-ups day.
- Two different registration systems.
- Multiple people using an alias to sign up.
- Individual player payment.
- Full refund and non-collection on late cancellations.
The new registration process adds/requires:
- A window to sign-up for Play Days measured in days/weeks rather than seconds.
- One registration system (Golf Genius).
- A blind draw for oversubscribed events.
- Team registration using Golf Genius accounts thereby eliminating duplicative entries.
- Securing payment with a credit card for the entire team fee (deferred collection).
Reasons to Change:
- To limit the mad dash to secure desired tee times, and provide ample time for players to complete the process.
- Many players, who may not be tech savvy or slow to the draw, feel pressure with the current process and miss desired events. This leads to staff handling many calls from unhappy players. Non-tech savvy golfers tend to give up and not play in Maine Golf Play Days.
- SINGLE SYSTEM: Finally have all registration and scoring of events in a single system.
- Refunds! We processed about $30,000 in refunds per year using the two-system approach for registration. Not only is the refund policy too generous, it does not serve as a deterrent for players to withdraw after being assigned a tee time. The end result is unused tee times or spots on teams, resulting in non-paid user fees to courses.
- We are moving to an entry fee per team rather than per player as in years past. Team entry for men’s Play Days in 2023 is $220. This puts the burden on the players and not the club. The club will be assured a payment for reserving the block of tee times. This will eliminate the $0 charge to play your own club. In this market, a $25 user fee is not much to pay even to play your own course.
Registration for 2023 men’s Play Days will open on Monday, April 3 at 9:00 a.m.
Registrations Open – The set time when registration for an event will be go live for teams looking to apply for a tee time. Registrations will open on the first Monday of each month for the subsequent month’s Play Days.
Registrations Close – Registrations will close at midnight 10 days prior to each event. In the case of a two-day event, it will close 10 days prior to the first day of the event (which means it could be 11 days if your team is playing on Saturday of a 2-day event, for example.
Team(s) – Teams are made up of four Maine Golf members with Golf Genius accounts. A team must be formed prior to registration and names must be legitimate in order to register for a tee time. This should minimize and ultimately eliminate multiple submissions from the same team. Teams may substitute a player up to the tee time of the event by contacting Maine Golf (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Entry Fee – The team entry fee for a men’s Play Day is $220. We are no longer charging per player. This will be secured by one credit card which will be billed 10 days prior to the event. For more information, see ‘Deferred Payments’ below.
Oversubscribed Event – An event when more teams register for a tee time than there are tee times available.
Deferred Payment – During the registration period, we will collect registrants’ credit card information. The card will not be charged initially but it will secure the registration. The entry fee will be charged on the card 10 days prior to the event if your team is selected to be in the event. Otherwise, it will not be charged if not selected.
Credit Card Rejection – Should a credit card be rejected for payment 10 days prior to the event, the team will have 2 days to pay the balance or the spot will not be reserved. Multiple rejections for payment will be referred to the Executive Director for follow-up. For oversubscribed events, the card will be charged only if they get into the event via blind draw.
Team and Tee Time Selection
Blind Draw – Oversubscribed events will utilize the new blind draw feature within Golf Genius. This feature shuffles registrants randomly with a click of a button. Once the blind draw is completed 10 days prior to the event, we will take the top X teams depending on the event. For example, if there are 40 available tee times and 50 teams applied during the registration window, Golf Genius will select 40 registrants to be in the event. The 10 other teams will be ranked on a waitlist.
Tee Time Selection – Once teams are selected with spot in each Play Day, teams will be able to select their desired tee times. Once the registration period is over (10 days prior to the event), teams selected will receive email communication via Golf Genius letting them know they are in the event. Within this email will be instructions on selecting their desired tee time, which opens 8 days prior to the event. Tee times will be selected on a first-come, first-serve basis via the open tee time functionality in Golf Genius. Each group that was chosen to play is guaranteed a spot in the field, but no times of day are guaranteed to any group.
The New Process
The new process within Golf Genius will be a familiar and straightforward process. Many players are already familiar with the platform and the process for event registration. This should provide for a fairly seamless transition. Registration pages and event portals will look just like they have for the past few seasons. Navigation for event registration will remain the same, as will the way events are displayed in our event directory on our website.
- Registrations will open on the first Monday of the month for events the following month (except in April which will also allow for April event registration in the same month).
- Registration will remain open for the duration of the registration period, which closes 10 days prior to each event. This will allow ample time for registrants to sort out any issues they may have and alleviate the pressure of getting in and securing a time as quickly as possible, as long as teams don’t wait until the last minute to register.
- During the registration period, players will register for the event(s) just like they would if they were registering for a championship. We will capture their information, including credit card and the names of the other 3 players in their group.
- Once the registration period has closed, staff will utilize a new feature within Golf Genius, a “shuffle” button that randomizes the order of teams in the event roster. This feature acts as a blind draw for oversubscribed events. If an event is not oversubscribed, then there will be no need for the blind draw. However, there will still be the need for teams to select a tee time.
- Once the registration period ends, and, if applicable, the blind draw has taken place, an automated email will be sent to those who registered a team into the event. This email will let them know they have gotten in the event and that their card will be charged. This email will also include the pertinent information on selecting their desired tee time. Selecting a tee time will begin 8 days prior to the event using the Golf Genius open tee time functionality. Teams may wait to select their tee time closer to the event, but will likely not have as many options to choose from if waiting too long after the tee time selection window opens. If you wait and the field fills the times you want, it does not qualify you for a refund because you didn’t get the time you wanted.
Signing up for a Play Day is a commitment to play and a commitment to take a tee time on the tee sheet. It is not a placeholder to see who you can get to play at a later date. Cancelling within 7 days before an event is a burden on all trying to manage a Play Day. Golfers, once on a waitlist, seek out other plans if they do not get a tee time initially. Courses, who are giving up that tee time for $25, are adjusting their tee sheets so Maine Golf can hold an event. Staff are working other events and need to stop, issue a refund, and try to fill the spot. A full refund, minus $5 as it’s currently written, is too generous and not much of a commitment from the players.
As a result, in 2023 we will be collecting $220 per team 10 days prior to each event. There will be no refunds once the team selections have been made. The user fees collected and not used will be paid to the clubs. The prize monies collected will be added to the prize pool.
This is an aggressive policy by all accounts. Maine Golf processed in excess of $30,000 in refunds in 2022. Many were single player refunds of $50. But in reality, the single player is taking up a tee time of four players, thus there is an additional $150 not accounted for in the refund. Never collected and never returned.
Extrapolated out (taking into account men, championships, women, etc.), we estimate the additional refund amount could be in excess of $50,000. The real refund impact could be as much as $80,000 to Maine Golf. On a $560,000 revenue budget, the percentage is 15%. Way too high! Threesomes (but not twosomes or singles) are allowed to play, but the missing player may or may not be refunded after review of the criteria previously mentioned. The tee time cost $220. The burden to fill the time is on the person who signs up for it.
With full fields and waitlists, we need committed golfers who want to play. Sign-up, pay, and play. No more taking tee times and pulling out the day before and wanting a refund. We can’t afford it and the players on the waitlist and the clubs shouldn’t have to put up with it.