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Why Should You Play The Michigan Players Tour?

by Ken Carter

March 23, 2010

In the past, a few players criticized the Tour and refused to play again because it hashad such small fields and it doesn't pay out very much. But since the payout in Tour events is directly related to the number of players who enter, their refusal to play in itself creates the problem they criticize us for.

It has not always been this way. Back in 2006, an event at The Grande in Jackson drew 20 players and had a $1,100.00 first place check. We also had a little sponsorship money in the purse at The Bear that year, and even with only 9 players in the field, the first place check was $1,350.00.

As noted above, a field of 30 players in a typical Tour event will generate a $1,000.00 first place check with no sponsorship money added at all. A new tour for PGA assistants has recently formed in Michigan, and it needs 66 players to compete to generate a $1,000.00 check.

To see how the Tour calculates prize money, go to the Purses page and try out the calculator. It has been on this web site since day one.

We have been saying all along, as soon as players "get" what we're trying to do and jump on the bandwagon, the Tour will take off and the media and sponsors will be interested.

The Michigan Players Tour has a very straightforward goal -- to provide for its players the ultimate golfing challenge by competing on some of the most demanding and spectacular layouts to be found anywhere in the world. And all in the pleasant conditions of a cool Michigan summer.

Other tours are established, have corporate sponsors, and pay top dollar to those who finish high up in the money. Meanwhile, they play average courses in blistering heat and humidity, and most events have an entry fee of more than a grand. You have to have a sponsor to play on those tours, or you won't make it. By the time Tour School rolls around, players are broke, worn out and often not in their best form. Sure, if you play well, your bank account may have something left over, but is that your goal? Most learn quickly there is not a lot of money to be earned on the mini tours unless you're in the top 10 every week.

But if you want to learn how to compete and score on some of the most demanding courses in America, experience a beautiful and pleasant summer up north, and be ready for Tour school -- refreshed and in top form -- the Michigan Players Tour is for you.

Let's tee it up!

Goals of the Michigan Players Tour

The Michigan Players Tour has established the following goals:

1. To Facilitate The Growth Of The Game

The Michigan Players Tour has been created to provide an outlet for players who desire to improve their games in order to compete at the highest level.

2. Partnership With Prestigious Sponsors

The Michigan Players Tour wil work with prestigious corporations and businesses in the Great Lakes region and the United States. Once the Tour has secured these sponsorships, it will work tirelessly to promote the products and / or services of its sponsors in all contacts with the media before, during, and after Tour events.

3. Generating Greater Publicity for Michigan Golf

The Michigan Players Tour is committed to generating increased publicity for Michigan golf. In order to accomplish this, the Tour will encourage and seek regional and national media coverage of Tour events both in print as well as on television.

5. Generating Increased Business For the Golf Industry

By promoting the game and providing incentives for golfers of all abilities to practice and play more often, the Michigan Players Tour seeks to improve business for all golf facilities and companies in the region.

6. Promotion of Business and Commerce in the Surrounding Communities

The Michigan Players Tour is dedicated to the enhancement of economic activity and tourism in the state of Michigan and in the communities in which Michigan Players Tour events take place.

7. Generating Funds For Charity

The Michigan Players Tour is committed to generating a significant contribution to local and regional charities.

Growing the Game -- A New Perspective

As most people in the golf industry know, the game of golf is in the midst of a general slowdown. Although the recent downturn in the economy is part of the reason, the game has not been attracting new participants at the rate projected just a few years ago during the golf course construction boom of the 1990's. There are various theories why this is true, and there are several initiatives now in place to address this shortfall. Among these initiatives are:

1. The First Tee Program -- an initiative cosponsored by the PGA of America and the PGA Tour to provide young golfers in disadvantaged areas of the country a place to play, and

2. The Play Golf America campaign -- an initiative designed by the PGA to encourage existing golfers to get out and play more often.

While these initiatives are needed and are producing positive results, it is the view of the Michigan Player's Tour more is needed.

In the opinion of the Tour, one solution generally overlooked by the custodians of the game is to promote competition and to create locally-based outlets for every player dedicated to improvement and developing their game to compete.

Golf is a wonderful game in that a golfer can play alone and enjoy the great outdoors in a totally non-competitive environment. But at its core, golf is a competitive sport, and those who play the game soon realize the greatest enjoyment in the game comes from competition, whether by competing against oneself to improve scores or by competing against others in leagues or tournaments.

Although it is true programs such as the First Tee and Play Golf America are attracting new players to the game, it is to be noted there are few programs in place to inspire existing golfers to take the next step and improve their games to a level where they are competitive in tournaments. In the opinion of the Tour, it is the kindling of this desire -- the desire to improve one's game to true competitiveness -- which will prove to be the ultimate key to building the game.

How many times have you played with your friends, and when someone hits a great shot, he is asked, "So when are you going to turn pro?" The adrenaline rush of a perfectly executed golf shot is addictive, and once experienced, becomes such a powerful motivator a person will stop at nothing to experience it again and again. This is where the desire to improve is created, and it is this desire which the golf industry must encourage in its efforts to grow the game.

With this perspective in mind, the Michigan Players Tour has been developed to create an environment in the Great Lakes region where golfers living here can take their game to the next level, without being forced to move to another part of the country. It is hoped the Tour will provide, at long last, motivation for them to work on their games, play more often, take lessons, and upgrade their equipment.

The Michigan Players Tour will work tirelessly to continue in this effort.

-- Ken Carter, Director of the Michigan Players Tour, August 30, 2007

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