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Eye-Opening Augusta - The New York Times

Category: Other Sports,Sports

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Augusta National Golf Club holds a unique place in the American psyche.

Slow to integrate, and with only male members until seven years ago, the private club is among the most exclusive playgrounds in the country, a haven for masters of the universe and Southern aristocracy.

And then, for one week each year, the club throws opens its gates to welcome tens of thousands of “patrons,” the world’s top golfers and a handful of aging legends. They all line up just after sunrise and enter a world bursting with color and towering pine trees.

There is an unreal quality to it. The grass underfoot doesn’t feel like the grass in your front yard. Does that shade of pink and purple azalea exist anywhere else? How is it possible that amid all this vegetation, there are seemingly no bugs?

Perhaps it’s best not to ask these questions. Answers will probably not be provided. So take in the splendor of the fans in their colorful golf shirts and sundresses reflecting off the ponds, and the magical talents of players who can skip golf balls off the water.

Gaze at all those spots that had existed only on television. There’s the Hogan Bridge over Rae’s Creek. There’s the patch of pine straw where Bubba Watson stood when he somehow hooked that miracle shot onto the 10th green in 2012. And look at all those green blazers. The members wear these throughout the week, in case you were wondering.

Open your eyes. There is much to see.


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