Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible?

All children ages 5 – 18 are eligible to participate in The First Tee of Benton Harbor activities. During the school year The First Tee of Benton Harbor operates within the Boys & Girls Club of Benton Harbor and has classes/rotations Monday – Friday each week.

How do I register?

Registration can be completed at The First Tee Academy located at Harbor Shores. You may also register by clicking on the registration link on our home page, downloading the registration form and mailing it in to The Academy.

What does it cost and what types of payment do you accept?

The Life Skills Experience (Summer Program) costs $50 for each session. For each additional child enrolled in the program the cost is $15. To add a second session the cost is also $15 per participant. You may pay for registration using a credit card online or by cash/check.

Why is the cost so low?

We keep our costs to the participants low to allow those who normally may not be able to afford to play golf the opportunity.

What is included in the registration fee?

The registration fee enrolls participants in a four-week Life Skills Experience session where they will receive golf skills, Life-Skills, Core Values and Healthy Habits instruction.  Golf clubs are available for participants who do not have access to them.  At the PLAYer and Par Levels the fee grants access to Blossom Trails Golf Club for classes and play days, a day of fun at Hidden Point Fun Park for miniature golf and ice cream and reduced golf rates at other participating local courses. Birdie, Eagle and ACE Level participants receive access to the world-class practice facilities at Harbor Shores Golf Course, for classes, access to Harbor Shores Golf Course once a week to play as well as an opportunity to apply for the Nancy Tennant Golf & Leadership Academy.

What is the refund policy?

Although we encourage all of our participants to continue their involvement with golf and our program, youth may choose to withdraw from The First Tee of Benton Harbor at any time. Those who withdraw prior to the start of their sessions will receive a full refund. After sessions have begun, no refunds will be given.

What is the inclement weather policy?

Classes that have to be cancelled due to inclement weather will be made up following the four-week session. When classes are cancelled due to weather, we will reach out through text, e-mails and Facebook prior to 7 a.m. to alert all participants and their families.

What is the The First Tee Life Skills Experience Certification process?

At the completion of classes, participants are asked to complete The First Tee Life Skills Experience Certification process. The participant completes certification by taking written life-skills and golf knowledge tests, as well as a golf-skills performance test. These tests must be completed for the participant to progress within The First Tee program. All participants begin at the new PLAYer level. The certification process guides them through the Par, Birdie, Eagle, and ACE levels as they continue with the program.

Do you do background checks on staff, coaches and volunteers?

All employees and volunteers of The First Tee of Benton Harbor program have to complete a background screening conducted by National Center for Safety Initiatives.

How can I become a volunteer?

To become a volunteer, contact the program director of The First Tee of Benton Harbor to receive the volunteer application and complete the necessary background checks. The next step is to attend a volunteer orientation, to learn the concepts and methods used by The First Tee.

What if my child doesn’t have equipment?

The First Tee of Benton Harbor will provide all of the equipment necessary to participate in our classes. If a participant has his/her own golf equipment, the participant is more than welcome to bring and use the equipment during instruction.

Is there a dress code?

We encourage the children to attend classes in proper golf attire.  Young men: shirts (either short- or long-sleeved), slacks or shorts no more than 4” above the knee.  Young ladies: collared (either sleeveless, short- or long-sleeved), slacks, golf skirts no more than 4” above the knee, or shorts no more than 6” above the knee.

Does my child need golf shoes?

Golf shoes are not a necessity. We do ask that all participants wear athletic shoes. Sandals and flip-flops are not considered athletic shoes and often do not provide enough support for the participants’ ankles.

What’s the role of the parent?

Parents are welcome to attend classes with the children. We only ask that parents not interfere with instruction.

Is there a parent orientation meeting?

We have Parent/Volunteer Orientation sessions throughout the spring and early summer. Please refer to the chapter calendar for days and times. Also, our Executive and Program Directors are available to speak with parents about the program and any special events.

Are we required to participate in fundraising?

Our chapter is fortunate to have a committed board of directors and partners. Participants in The First Tee of Benton Harbor may be asked to attend special events to meet potential donors and/or display their golf/life skills.

What if I am having financial difficulties and cannot pay the registration fee?

The First Tee of Benton Harbor will provide scholarships to those that cannot pay the registration fee.

Who do I contact with comments or concerns?

Please direct comments/concerns to the Executive Director by email, esanders@tftbh.org, or calling the office (269) 210-6968.

Are there attendance requirements for certification?

To participate in the certification process, a participant must attend at least 75% of the classes. Make-up sessions are provided to those who do not meet this requirement.