Kevin Kisner throws up a fist as his son, Henry, 5, sinks a putt on the No. 8 green during the Par 3 Contest on April 5, 2023, at The Masters golf tournament at Augusta National Golf Club. [Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Network]

Pat Dooley’s High Five: Coolest Parts Of Augusta National

It’s that time of the year when the High Five gets a bit nostalgic for the old days, back when the Gainesville Sun used to send me to The Masters every year.

I went to nine, took my dad and my wife to one and played the course once.

So, I feel like I know it, even with the changes they have made to stretch it out.

On this High Five, we look at the five coolest parts of being at Augusta National:

  1. The prices

OK, they gouge you pretty good in the gift shop, but there are still lines to get in because it’s the only time you can buy the Masters logo on things. The food and beer prices? I remember my Dad getting a ham sandwich and a beer and he hesitated eating because he wanted to savor the bargain he just received.

  1. The elevation changes

Until you visit the course, well, let me just tell you TV does Augusta National no justice. You can get winded going up the hill to the 18th, which is why Arnold Palmer in his later years would always walk up the left side where it was more of a gradual climb.

  1. The patrons

Yeah, I do love the circus at the Waste Management in Arizona, but the patrons at Augusta (please don’t call them fans or badge holders) get the game more than any fans anywhere. They are respectful and polite and you better not drop a green sandwich wrapper on the ground or they will pounce on it.

  1. The roars

How many times have I been on the course and heard a roar so loud it actually startled you and then just camped by a scoreboard to see what happened? One of the loudest I heard was when Jack Nicklaus canned a chip shot on No. 3 and you thought people’s hair had caught on fire.

  1. The colors

The azaleas are brighter there. The trees seem to be the perfect height. The magnolias and dogwoods are beautiful as long as you don’t hit into them. The course was originally a nursery and in some ways it still is.

WRUF.com sports columnist Pat Dooley can be heard on “The Tailgate” along with Jeff Cardozo from 4-6 p.m. Monday-Friday on 98.1-FM/AM-850 WRUF.

About Pat Dooley

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