The Long Beach Golf Festival was created in 1989 by then Parks and Recreation Director Ralph Cryder. His concept was to conduct a “festival of golf” which provided championship golfing opportunities to every level and type of golfer, and showcased the City of Long Beach’s golf courses.
The Long Beach Golf Festival (www.lbgolffestival.com) includes the following events:
Senior Amateur Championship: A 54-hole event for men golfers age 50 and above (broken into a championship and various age flights) which plays one round at each of the three regulation courses.
Men’s Match Play Championship: Conducted over three consecutive weekends, this event is a 36-hole qualifying event followed by six rounds of match play to determine the champion. This event was originally the Long Beach City Championship, but when a stroke play City Championship was created in 1971, the name was changed. The championship rotates every year between the three regulation courses.
Long Beach Men’s City Championship: In 1971 an idea to have a 54-hole stroke play championship playing one round on each of the City’s regulation courses was implemented and the Long Beach Medal Play Championship was begun. Currently there are a championship and 5 handicap flights which play 36-holes at Recreation and El Dorado Park GCs, then the field is cut to the low 1/3 and ties in each flight for the final round at Skylinks at Long Beach GC. Former winners of the Men’s City include PGA Tour members Paul Goydos and John Merrick.
Long Beach Women’s City Championship: Originally begun in 1930, the Women’s City is one of the longest running women’s events in southern California. Once played over each of the three regulation courses, the event is now a 36-hole affair conducted at Recreation and El Dorado Park GCs, with a championship and 5 handicap flights.
Crosby Memorial Junior Championship: Named for long-time junior golf supporter and promoter Tom Crosby, this event provides a 9-hole championship for junior golfers under age 11 at Recreation Park South Course, and an 18-hole championship for ages 12-17 at Recreation Park 18 GC.
Long Beach Open Amateur Qualifying: The Long Beach Open provides an amateur field of 12 players the opportunity to play in a great event, and test their games against “the future stars” of the PGA Tour. Several spots in the field are reserved for winners of other Golf Festival events, the Low Amateur from the previous Open and representatives of Long Beach State and the Moore League high schools, but a minimum of six players can qualify to play in the Open though this event at Recreation Park 18.
Long Beach Open Charity Pro-Am: Preceding the Long Beach Open, the Charity Pro-Am is a chance for local golfers to mingle with tomorrow’s stars. The Charity Pro-Am is also a vehicle for American Golf Corporation to support local charities including the Assistance League of Long Beach, the Long Beach State golf teams and Partners of Parks, the non-profit support group for Long Beach Parks and Recreation.
$170,000 Long Beach Open Championship: Considered one of the best – if not the best – non-PGA Tour sponsored professional golf events in the United States, the Long Beach Open has a field of 300 professional golfers that play one round each at El Dorado and Skylinks, before a cut is made for the final 36-holes on the weekend at El Dorado. Former participants in the Open include Tour winners Scott McCarron, Jason Gore and Paul Goydos.
Volunteer Tournament: Over 100 volunteers assist with the conduct of all of the activities associated with the Golf Festival, and each year, they are hosted for a wrap-up tournament at Recreation Park GC where the City and American Golf show their appreciation for these people who have made the Golf Festival the award winning event that showcases Long Beach golf.