Explaining 'Pro for Hire' or 'Buy the Pro'

At charity fund-raising golf tournaments, golfers might sometimes learn that a feature named "Pro for Hire" or "Buy the Pro" (or similar) is in effect. What does it mean? It means that your group, if it wants to, can get assistance on certain holes from a professional golfer.

When Pro for Hire is offered, it is usually in effect at one, maybe two, holes on the golf course. A professional golfer (most commonly one on staff at the golf course being playing) is stationed on the specified hole(s). When your group reaches that hole, it has the option of paying a fee in order to "buy the pro."

That extra fee adds to the tournament's fund-raising pool. And that is what Pro for Hire is: a way for the tournament organizers to increase the take for the charity that is the beneficiary of the fund-raising.

If you decide to buy the pro, what happens? Most commonly, the pro is stationed at a par-3 hole and hits a tee ball for the group. The idea is that the pro is likely to be a much better player than anyone in a typical charity tournament, and having the pro hit a tee shot makes it more likely your group will wind up with a better score on that hole. (Groups are not required to hire the pro, however.)

The "pro for hire" might be stationed on a hole where a long drive pays dividends. Or there might be multiple pros for hire, one at each of the par-3s, or a mix of several par-3 and par-5 holes. How many pros are there, and how much it costs to hire one, is up to the tournament organizers. And remember, their goal is raising money.

In that way, Pro for Hire provides the same function as a tournament offering mulligans for sale, or offering golfers a chance to buy hole-in-contest chances.

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