Imagine a tournament where there’s a prize for coming in last. That’s just one of the many prizes on offer at Buck Hill Falls’ annual Tournament of Roses. The off-beat golf tournament is an end of summer marker for the community, which can’t help but say farewell to the season in style. 

Taking place right before Labor Day Weekend, the tournament dates back over 50 years, when Buck Hillers Ruthanne and Tyler Groseclose started up the tradition with some friends. It’s endured through the generations and today second and third generation descendants of those original players–plus some of those founders–take part in the fun. 

The tournament challenges golfers to 18 crazy holes with challenges like hitting a golf shot with a tennis racquet, trying to sink a hole surrounded by a toilet seat and taking a shot out of a styrofoam cup. Players are also challenged to take a shot with a pool stick.

Along the fairway, competitors will come across lawn bowling equipment scattered on the green, which they will have to carefully put around. They’ll also have to go for a bit of a hike in the cross country-style shots, which have golfers start on one tee and finish on another. You may even end up completing the shots of your foursome, alternating the same shot up the course until you can sink into the hole.

All of those zany challenges are rewarded, though. At the end of the round, there are a number of tournament prizes awarded from the beautiful patio. Fittingly, many of those prizes are bouquets of roses, in honor of the tournament’s name.

The Tournament of Roses is one of the many quirky tournaments–and more serious ones–that take place at Buck Hill throughout the season, including the Tiara Tournament, Men’s Golden Years Tournament and a number of tennis competitions.


This year’s Tournament of Roses will take place August 31 and up to 100 “golfers” are expected to participate. If you’re looking for a bit of fun and a bit of tomfoolery to end the season on a high note, this one’s a can’t-miss.

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