Golf Course Management

JUL 2015

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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07.15 GOLF COURSE MANAGEMENT 77 that would weaken member experience and impact our ability to reach the "critical mass" of 1,000 participants, so we opted to focus on other cost-cutting techniques. We looked into an insurance policy from the company Showstop - pers, which would reimburse the club for any expenses, including the cost of in-house labor, in the event of cancellation because of weather. Incorporating an additional expense into an event we'd been struggling with for years may seem counterintuitive, but as the event had grown, so had the costs. By 2013, the Fireworks Extravaganza was projected to cost $48,000. With this type of exposure, the additional cost of the insurance policy was a wise decision. The policy premium was based on projected event revenue, so it was set at 3 percent, or $1,440. Success at last So, how did the Fireworks Extravaganza pan out in 2014? The weather cooperated, and 950 people came out to enjoy the beautiful day at NCC. Attendance was down by about 100 compared with the previ - ous year. We attribute this to a combination of people who were turned off by the bad weather in 2013, and the adjustments we made for 2014 — raising the admission price to $50 for adults to cover the cost of the insurance policy, and not including drinks in admission. Happily, the insurance policy went unused. The biggest adjustment we ended up making for 2014 was that mem - bers purchased beverage tickets for $2 per ticket. Until 2014, beverages were covered in the price of admission. As we studied the event P&Ls, the need to charge for drinks became apparent if we wanted to maintain an affordable price of admission and achieve our goal of break-even or better. In 2012 (the year before the rainout), we had 850 participants, and beverages were included. That year, we went through 24 kegs of beer. In 2014, we had 950 participants, beverages were not included, and we went through only seven kegs. We sold 2,225 beverage tickets at $2 each, for a total of $4,500 in additional revenue. A related item of note was that in 2014, we saw a substantial increase in the number of drinks sold at the cocktail bar. Apparently, if beer is included, members are prone to con - sume more. If asked to purchase beverage tickets, they're more selective and actually willing to spend more to get their libation of choice. So, after fve years of evaluating and altering several facets of our Fire - works Extravaganza, we fnally pulled off a break-even event. This may USE MILORGANITE TO RELIEVE STRESSED TURF IMPROVE COLOR & DENSITY Use Milorganite mixed with sand (eg. 50/50 by volume) as a topdressing on thin spots on greens. Apply weekly until the turf has recovered. For more information contact Jaime at 1-800-287-9645 www.milorganite.com

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