Monday, April 10, 2017

Ten Things You HAVE To Do At The Masters

Am I sounding like a broken record yet?  I think it's safe to say that y'all know by now that last week was one of my absolute favorites of the year.  We spent the weekend watching the Masters coverage on tv - anyone with me?  While I'd love to one day be in Augusta on a Sunday afternoon, being only 5 feet tall definitely has its disadvantages when watching golf in-person.  This year, I stuck to hosting a Masters viewing party, and we made our pilgrimage to Augusta earlier in the week, for a practice round on Monday.  If you ever have the opportunity to get tickets to the Masters, take them!  Even if you aren't a golf fan, the atmosphere, beauty, food, and fun at Augusta National are totally worth the adventure.  Thinking about my favorite things to do while at the Masters, I rounded up 10 must-dos if you're ever at Augusta National:

1. Before you leave, make sure you wear comfortable clothes and shoes.  You'll be doing a lot of walking, and while looking cute is fun, make sure your outfit is functional, too.  There are some crazy rules at Augusta, and one of them is no bare feet.  If you're walking around (or even sitting down) without shoes on, you will kindly be asked to put them back on.  You can bring one 10x10x12 bag, so consider bringing sunscreen, a hat, an extra pair of shoes, and a jacket as it can be cool first thing in the morning.

2. Get there as soon as the gates open.  This year for practice rounds, the gates opened at 7am to the practice facility, concessions, and shopping, then to the course at 8am.
3. Go shopping.  When we arrived, we watched a few golfers warm up then decided to get our shopping out of the way first.  If you wait until the end of the day, you can wait in Disney-long lines just to get into the merchandise pavilion.  We get Mother's Day, Father's Day, birthdays, and even some Christmas shopping out of the way at Augusta.  Everyone loves that famous logo, and the prices are so inexpensive!  Your tickets allow you to leave and come back three times throughout the day, so we brought everything right back to the car so we didn't have to carry it around all day.
4. Walk the whole course backwards.  Once you're allowed onto the grounds, go for a walk, preferably first thing in the morning.  The benefit of walking backwards is that it will take less time, and you'll see a variety of golfers.  If you start on the first hole with one group, walking forwards, you will have to stop each time they hit a shot, slowing your progress, and if you walk a full 18 with the same group, that'll take 4 and a half hours.  This way, starting at 18, you will criss-cross with groups, see a lot of action, and it's doable in about an hour.
Jason Day on 18
13th hole, Azalea
2nd hole, Pink Dogwood

5. Eat one of everything.  With the miles of walking you've done, you deserve a treat (or five).  There are concession stands all over the course, serving up a variety of sandwiches for breakfast and lunch.  As a bonus, the prices are amazing.  $1.50-$3 for sandwiches and $4-$5 for beers.  The most famous sandwiches are the pimento cheese and egg salad.  Don't forget the sweets, too!  I love the Georgia Peach Ice Cream Sandwiches and Chocolate Toffee Brownies!
6. Collect cups.  Each sweet tea, soda, and beer you buy comes in a great souvenir cup.  You'll see people all over the course with stacks of these cups.  Follow suit and start your tower.  Bring them home, too!
At practice rounds (Monday-Wednesday):
7. Bring a camera.  Although you can't bring a cell phone any day of the tournament, on practice round days, you can bring a camera.  There are so many beautiful views, and make sure you ask someone to take a photo of you and your group - you won't regret it.

8. Watch players skip golf balls on 16.  The 16th hole is a par 3, and after golfers hit their tee shot, they walk towards the water that connects the tee box to the green.  Patrons yell, "Skip! Skip! Skip!" and almost every player stops to hit an extra ball, trying to skip it across the water to the green.  Obviously, this is only done on practice round days since the scores aren't counted, and it's fun to watch the golfers have a little fun with their sport.
Dustin Johnson skipping his shot on hole 16

During tournament rounds (Thursday-Sunday):
9. Take a photo in front of the clubhouse.  Technically, you can do this any day during the week, but having the opportunity to bring your own camera on practice round days makes it not necessary to wait in the hour+ line for a photo.  If you wind around the side of the clubhouse, you can have the club photographer take a photo of you and your group in front of Founders' Circle on Magnolia Lane (where the flowering Augusta National logo is).  These photos are completely free, and you can print them out later through the Masters website.
10. Bring a chair and take a seat.  Crowds swell like crazy, especially on the weekend.  Each patron can bring in one collapsable chair without arm rests, and set it up in one of the many seating areas around the course.  The great thing is that you don't need to be seated in it the whole time.  I suggest finding a spot on 18, walking around for a few hours, and returning to the chairs as the first groups reach the final hole.  If you don't bring a chair, you could be standing 10+ people deep, trying to see the action.
There you have it!  Only 51 more weeks until Masters week 2018!  Finally, today is the very last day to enter my 2017 Masters giveaway on Instagram.  Click here to check it out - good luck!

If you'd like to check out more of my Masters-inspired posts, check out: Masters Morning Mimosas, Copycat Georgia Peach Ice Cream Sandwiches, and Five Tips For Hosting Your Own Masters Viewing Party.


Ashley @ A Cute Angle said...

This looks so much fun! I love going to live sporting events! Great tips too!

Carly said...

I had no idea they opened it up before the event (I know very little about golf, obviously), but when we were watching some of it I kept saying how gorgeous it looked and how much I'd love to just walk around!

Kate at Green Fashionista said...

Such an amazing experience! Love that they open before the event, and yes to cute but functional clothes <3
Green Fashionista

Just Jess said...

What an amazing experience! If I ever get the chance to go I will be referring to this list. Jess at Just Jess

Nikki @ makeupHER said...

Since hubby loves golf, we were watching the Masters during the weekend on and off. I was never really into golf, but it can get exciting which is probably the number one reason why people are turned off by it. I love all the skill that is required! Looks like beautiful grounds too, fab that you got to visit!

Jen said...

I'm not even a huge fan of golf but this sounds amazing!!!!! What an awesome experience.

Ashley @ The Wandering Weekenders said...

It sounds like y'all had the best time this past week at the Masters! That's such a good idea to start at the 18th hole and then walk around so you don't get stopped by everybody that's playing. I feel like you also can't beat the prices for food! I mean what other professional event has food for that cheap?

BLovedBoston said...

I went to TPC at Sawgrass a few years ago and since then I've always wanted to go to the master's! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

Julie said...

Not going to lie, those prices shock me considering how much things are at baseball etc.

Emily @ Martinis | Bikinis said...

So fun you got to attend the Masters and looks like you were blessed with gorgeous weather for the day! The prices for food & drinks are very reasonable for a sporting event. I'm not craving a pimento sandwich...thank you! lol

Christina Lea Loves said...

Such great tips - definitely remembering these as this is high up on Derek's travel list! The food prices kill me and I'd totally be collecting the cups too!

Chesson | Magnolia+Main said...

I've always wanted to go back to the Masters (now that I'm not an uninterested 6 year old!) and if we do get to go back, definitely using this guide of yours. Sounds like the perfect day!

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