Minnesota Golf Association

MINNESOTA GOLF COURSES REPORT MORE ROUNDS IN 2021

December 23, 2021


EDINA, Minn. (Dec. 23, 2021) – On behalf of its allied golf associations and its member golf clubs across the state, the Minnesota Golf Association has completed a second annual facility rounds study to more accurately track golf participation in the state.  

For the second consecutive year, golf facilities across all categories in Minnesota report an increase in golf rounds over the previous year by an average 6.9 percent.

The MGA surveyed 358 golf facilities around the state, with 98 facilities reporting rounds over the last four years in the following categories: municipal, (42.4 percent reporting); private, (43.2 percent); public daily fee, (15.6 percent); and resort, (45 percent).*

“As we discovered during the pandemic, golf was one of the few sports or activities that all Minnesotans could safely participate in throughout the summer,” said Tom Ryan, MGA executive director and COO, adding, “this new data shows that we have sustained last year’s remarkable momentum through the ’21 season.”
 

Public Daily Fee 2018 2019 2020 2021
Avg. Rounds/Facility 19531 20105 26440 27424
% Change YOY   2.9% 31.5% 3.7%
         
Municipal 2018 2019 2020 2021
Avg. Rounds/Facility 25394 25734 34110 36738
% Change YOY   1.3% 32.5% 7.7%
         
Private 2018 2019 2020 2021
Avg. Rounds/Facility 17353 16794 23221 24614
% Change YOY   -3.2% 38.3% 6.0%
         
Resort 2018 2019 2020 2021
Avg. Rounds/Facility 17570 17875 19757 21463
% Change YOY   1.7% 10.5% 8.6%
         
9 Hole/Short Course 2018 2019 2020 2021
Avg. Rounds/Facility 16200 16375 23222 24024
% Change YOY   1.1% 41.8% 3.5%
         
         
All Facilities 2018 2019 2020 2021
Avg. Rounds/Facility 20347 20822 27389 29292
% Change YOY   2.3% 31.5% 6.9%
 
For 2020, with restrictions in place during the pandemic on most forms of outdoor recreational activities, golf rounds surged by an average of 31.5 percent. This year’s average rounds increase is due, in part, to better weather, more playable days during the shoulder seasons (spring and fall), a record number of beginner and lapsed golfers participating in the game, and core golfers playing more.††

Likewise, MGA members – approximately 83,000 golfers who play at public and private golf clubs around the state – posted 1.4 million rounds of golf in 2020 and 1.6 million rounds in 2021, representing year-over-year increases of 48.9% and 14.2%, respectively. †††

“Playing golf continues to check all the boxes: it’s played outdoors, and represents both a physically and mentally healthful activity that thousands of kids and their families can participate in together,” explained Ryan.

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* Data from 88 facilities was used in the rounds reporting. 

The average rounds increase reported in Dec. 2020 (29.7%) was revised upward somewhat (1.8%) due to slightly different reporting facilities.    

†† According to Joe Beditz/National Golf Foundation presentation to IAGA, Nov. 2021, Frisco, Texas.

††† There are 82,925 youth and adult MGA members for the two-year period ending Oct. 31, 2021, which represents year-over-year increases in membership of 7.9% and 10.7%, respectively; the MGA score posting season for handicap purposes begins April 1 and runs through October.    
                                                                                    

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