Minnesota Golf Association

2021 COVID-19 MGA Tournament Policies and Procedures

Below are the Local Rules and guidelines for MGA events. These guidelines are based on recommendations from the World Health Organization and Center for Disease Control, as well as directives from the State of Minnesota government. A player who blatantly disregards these guidelines may be subject to disqualification from the event and removal from the facility. These guidelines are subject to change pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Order protocols and/or Minnesota DNR Outdoor Recreational Guidelines. 
  • Flagsticks – Unless otherwise stated, players MAY elect to remove the flagstick at their own discretion.
  • Bunkers – Unless otherwise stated, rakes will be on the golf course. Use of the rake by the player is not mandatory and at the discretion of the player. Players are encouraged to use their feet to smooth bunkers after making a stroke from one if they choose not to use the rake.  

    The following local rule is in effect.

    Any damaged area in a bunker is deemed Ground Under Repair, and the player may take full relief under GUR procedures (Rule 16.1c) but must stay inside the bunker. NOTE – Rule 16.1c is modified in this way: Interference does not exist if the disturbed area in a bunker only interferes with the player’s stance.

    Damaged areas include (but are not limited to) footprints and other disturbances that may have been caused by players, animals or other sources.  "Damage" does not include areas prepared by maintenance equipment or the raking of areas by a player.
    • In the unlikely event there is nowhere to drop in the bunker without going closer to the hole, the player may drop at the nearest point of relief (without the one club-length) even if that spot is closer to the hole.
    • Reminder – Under Rule 16.1c, the player must drop the ball from knee height and is not permitted to place the ball. The player also has the option to play the ball as it lies.
    • Under a Penalty of One Stroke, the player may elect to drop behind the bunker along the line formed by the flagstick and the spot where the ball is at rest in the bunker, going back on the line as far as the player wishes.
  • Registration – There will be a registration area at all events for players to check in. This is to ensure players have their GGID for the day and so that they can be made aware of any special instructions for the event.
  • Paperwork – All tournament information, including but not limited to the Hole Location and Local Rules sheets, will be provided electronically prior to the tournament. Players are encouraged to download and read these materials on their own before their round because paper versions of this information will not be provided at the tournament site.
    • NOTE: Links to these materials will be sent to tournament participants and always may be found on the event landing page on the MGA website.
  • Golf Carts – When allowed per the competition, players from different households may now share a cart per the current DNR Outdoor Recreation Guidelines without any restrictions.
  • Caddies – Players ARE permitted to use caddies.  
  • Starting Tees – Players should check in at their starting tee immediately after the group in front of them has left the teeing area.
    • Starter’s Boxes – Starting tees WILL have a Starter’s Box containing tees, pencils, local scorecards and hand sanitizer.
  • Digital Scoring – Online scoring is mandatory through the use of the USGA Tournament Management "DIgital Scoring" App. MGA scorecards will not be provided. 
    • Players are expected to download the USGA Tournament Management App. This allows a player to access online scoring and record scores.
    • Educational information on how to use it is available via video and written instructions.
    • Each player is expected to serve as a scorer digitally.
    • After completing the round, ONE group at a time will be allowed in the “scoring area.”  While players will certify their scores digitally, players are expected to report to the "Scoring Area" to resolve any rules questions and any other questions.  A player’s scorecard is deemed returned, and no changes may be made, after the marker and player have certified the scores and the group has left the Scoring Area.  If the group does not report to the Scoring Area in a timely manner, the scores entered online will be accepted as official.  
    • The player will receive an email with his or her scorecard as a confirmation.
    Scoreboards will be visible only through the USGA Tournament Management app, the MGA website and host facility monitors (if available). 
  • Shuttling – Shuttling of players may take place in specific situations, such as when play is suspended by the Committee due to weather.  In addition, shuttles may be provided to groups that start or finish on a hole away from the clubhouse, such as after a match has finished.    
    • In all cases, communication regarding resumption of play will be sent by text message.
  • Spectators – Spectators are allowed on the golf course. 
  •  Snacks/Water – Snacks and water MAY be provided by the MGA. 

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