This Spring the NCCGA will host 57 club golf tournaments all around the country: 56 regional tournaments, and the Spring 2016 National Championship. The schedule has been set for the Spring season, and can be found here. We are currently in the process of booking the tournament locations, but I wanted to provide a glimpse into how we decide the dates for each event.
There are four main factors that influence which weekends we hold tournaments.
1) School Schedules
Before setting any schedules we reach out to each region and try to find out each school's Spring Break dates, fraternity events, finals, sporting events, anything that might prevent a club from being able to play.
One schedule conflict that sometimes doesn't show up on the school calendar are holidays. While some schools don't mind playing on a holiday such as Columbus Day, others are almost strictly off-limits. This Spring semester Easter is Sunday March 27, which has ruled out the 26/27 for almost every region. Many schools provide a break from school before or after this weekend, while many other students simply want to spend that weekend with family.
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A big issue in the spring season, we always keep our eye on the weather. Holding a tournament in March in Vermont is not a reality, so the Northeastern Regions are usually scheduled as late as possible in the Spring to try and ensure the best possible weather conditions.
4) Nationals Qualifying
The date of the Spring 2016 National Championship (April 23/24) which means the latest we would host a Spring tournament is April 9/10 weekend. Any later than that airfare begins to rise, and can put teams in a financial bind. Finishing by April 10th provides all teams, individuals and wildcards two weeks to make travel arrangements.
Why can't we do the National Championship later than April 23/24? Any later and we run the risk of conflicts with graduation dates and finals (for many schools).
The NCCGA continues to improve the tournament scheduling and booking process, and always appreciate hearing feedback and ideas. We hope you have a great summer, and are looking forward to the Spring season of club golf!
**Travis Richardson supports students and club golf teams on the East and West Coasts. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.