last week, stephen and I made our first-ever trip to augusta, georgia to attend the masters tournament. I really didn't know what to expect especially given that the weather was so dicey on the day we visited. after doing some research and experiencing the tournament first hand, here are my top 5 tips for visiting the masters!
1. phones and cameras are NOT allowed on tournament days
cameras are allowed on practice days, but phones are never allowed. it is strictly enforced and you will be kicked out if you violate this rule. so obviously, we didn't bring our phones and it was such a weird feeling - I liked it, but of course, wanted to photograph just about everything all day long and couldn't. I feel like I really need to go back on a practice day so I can capture all the beauty of augusta national.
2. take advantage of the free professional photo opportunity early
since you can't take selfies or any photos for that matter, augusta national generously offers a complimentary professional photo in front of the clubhouse (photo above). there will be a line, so get there early. we did this first and it was a breeze. they take your photo and give you a card with a link to download it later. loved this!
3. bring armless lawn chairs and pick a spot early
you can bring armless chairs into augusta and leave them basically wherever you want all day long. no one will mess with them or move them, it's actually pretty amazing. we used some chairs we bought on amazon but if you are feeling nostalgic, pop into the gift shop and $40 will get you pretty masters branded green chair. write your name in the card on the back of the chair and set up shop on whatever hole you like. I recommend the huge hill between hole 15 and 16.
4. eat your heart out and shop til you drop
you absolutely have to check out the gift shop and the food stalls. pimento cheese sandwiches are $1.50 - the menu is simple southern and inexpensive as a relic of the past. I tried the pimento cheese, georgia pecan caramel corn, moon pies, and peach ice cream sandwiches. unfortunately, there is only beer available for sale. if you're lucky, you'll have corporate access to a cabin (actually nothing about these resemble cabins, see the photo below. total southern living perfection) which has a full bar available. if not, enjoy the beer and keep your cups (pictured above)! they are totally souvenirs and everyone stacks up their cups as a badge of honor. as for the gift shop, you will likely have to wait in line to get in. the prices are okay, not great. stock up on anything you want because you can't find any of it online (if you do, it will be double the price). after loading up, use the free merchandise check-in service so you don't have to carry your stuff around all day. checking in our purchases and picking them up later was an absolute breeze.
5. lastly, wear tennis shoes
I basically have to eat my words on this one. stephen told me a million times to wear tennis shoes and there was just no way I was going to do that. the grounds were muddly and I ended up caking on lots of dirt to my favorite pair of boots I got in paris. ugh. case in point, just wear the tennis shoes or converse or whatever your sneaker of choice is these days. you will walk so much and I promise you won't regret it. everyone else will have them on too.
have you been to the masters before? do you like golf? I can't wait to throw a masters party next year with our cups and a menu consisting of pimento cheese sandwiches and peach ice cream sandwiches. how fun is that!