Sign up for the World's Largest Golf Outing; earlier date and new charities, including Arnie's Army

The 2017 World's Largest Golf Outing kicks off Go Play Week on May 1

There's still time to get involved in the World's Largest Golf Outing, which has an earlier date this year and some other new wrinkles.

In case you're not familiar with it, the WLGO is just as the name implies: a charity golf event that involves more golfers than any other in the world. What makes that possible is that it takes places on golf courses throughout the United States and Canada. In fact, this year, 146 courses will play host to WLGO outings on May 1.

Last year's WLGO, held in August, raised more than a half-million dollars for charity. Since 2011, more than $3.5 million has been raised for charity, and more than 50,000 players at more than 130 golf courses have participated.

Now in its seventh year, the WLGO is co-sponsored by Billy Casper Golf and GolfNow and will benefit two charities for the first time in the event's history: Fisher House Foundation and Arnie's Army.

Also new for this year, the event is also being held in conjunction with GolfNow's Go Play Week. From May 1 through May 5 there will be a collection of specific, golf-centered events designed to bring more golfers to courses, rom encouraging new players to come out and play to inviting seasoned, avid golfers to test the latest equipment. Daily events include the WLGO, "Bring a Beginner" on May 2, Women's Wednesday on May 3, Test Drive Thursday on May 4 and Family Golf on May 5.

Fisher House is known for a network of comfort homes where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while a loved one is receiving treatment. Arnie's Army was inspired by the late Arnold Palmer. It provides financial support to institutions and organizations that help children, youth, families, the environment and communities.

Online registration for the WLGO is ongoing. Cost varies by location (you can find courses on the home page), and the fees include a $10 per player charitable donation, green fees, shared cart, warm up bucket (if applicable), lunch (if applicable), local prizes and awards ceremony following play. A USGA handicap is not required, and players can join as a single, twosome or foursome.

The format is a scramble, but there are two goals for team – lowest score and highest fundraising total, which can net prizes and grand prizes for teams and individuals.

You can sign up or find a participating course near you at

Video: Peter Hill talks 2016 World's Largest Golf Outing

Mike Bailey is a senior staff writer based in Houston. Focusing primarily on golf in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America with an occasional trip to Europe and beyond, he contributes course reviews, travel stories and features as well as the occasional equipment review. An award-winning writer and past president of Texas Golf Writers Association, he has more than 25 years in the golf industry. Before accepting his current position in 2008, he was on staff at PGA Magazine, The Golfweek Group and AvidGolfer Magazine. Follow Mike on Twitter at @MikeBaileyGA and Instagram at @MikeStefanBailey.

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The 2017 World's Largest Golf Outing kicks off Go Play Week on May 1