The Masters’ Par 3 has been part of Augusta’s history since 1960 and happens on the Wednesday before the US Master’s tournament annually.
The competition takes place on a par-27, nine-hole course secluded in the northeast corner of Augusta National Grounds, near the 10th hole of the main course. It’s a popular event for both golf enthusiasts as well as curious onlookers and never fails to disappoint either.
Here’s why you should put the par 3 Masters on your bucket list of things to do next year.
1. The Views are Breathtaking
If you think Augusta looks gorgeous on TV, you should see it in real life. This course is consistently rated one of the most beautiful in the world, and famous for its gorgeous groves of azaleas.
The par 3 course is no exception, with two ponds at its heart and immaculately manicured fairways and greens. Trees, flowers, and shrubs abound and you can see the classic white cabins of the main course in the distance.
Its beauty fades when captured on screen and in print. You can only fully appreciate it in person.
2. Masters Par 3 History and Folklore
This event has a rich history and many unforgettable moments have unfolded on these greens.
Who could forget Tony Finau acing the 7th hole in 2018 and then spraining his ankle seconds later in a victory dash down the hill?
Another memorable moment came when Jack Nicklaus predicted his hole-in-one in the tournament hours before it happened in 2015, Three years later his grandson aced the 9th hole and the champion’s delight was a joy to behold.
Golf lovers will never forget the year (2016) Jimmy Walker won the tournament by accomplishing an ace and six birdies to finish. If you aren’t au fait with golfing lingo, you can look it up here to truly appreciate this feat.
One of the best-known stories surrounding the Masters Par 3 contest is the ‘curse’ that befalls anyone who wins it. Nobody has ever succeeded in this contest and gone on to win the Masters’ in the same year.
Only 14 players have ever won both tournaments.
3. It’s Considered Cool to Get Disqualified
Thanks to its reputation for jinxing the US Masters, some players don’t take the tournament seriously. While it’s considered a great warm-up for the following week’s exertions, nobody really wants to win it.
As a result, some Master’s hopefuls will deliberately seek elimination by allowing their wives and children to play a couple of shots for them. Others will play brilliantly and then pull off the most unbelievable goof shots to throw the game.
4. Kids on Course
Thanks to the above tradition, it’s become commonplace to see pro golfer’s family members on course with them.
Tiger Woods brought his children and girlfriend at the time along with him to celebrate his return to the big time in 2015. The little ones arrived wearing oversized caddies outfits and were a huge hit with the crowds.
On another occasion, Danny Willett’s toddler ran onto the green and placed his father’s ball in the cup. The crowd went wild although Willett got disqualified.
These instances of children on course have become synonymous with the tournament and are an undeniable part of its charm for spectators. It’s wonderful to see the family-focussed side of these professional sportsmen and see them relaxing during a game for a change.
This laid-back vibe means it’s a lot easier to get autographs from your favorite players too.
5. Everywhere is a Good Vantage Point
The layout of the course means you can see at least two holes from anywhere, which makes for a lot less jostling for position around every green.
Since the course is in a natural basin, with great acoustics, any loud cheers reverberate around the property, which adds immensely to the atmosphere. You always know when something exciting is happening somewhere in the vicinity.
6. Celebrity Spotting
Apart from the best players of the day, you’ll get to see some of golf’s best-known old-timers out on the day. Only past winners of the US Masters tournament and those entered for the current year are eligible to enter.
Past champions like Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus, and Tom Watson often join in the fun and give their successors a run for their money. Since these past masters have nothing to lose by winning the tournament and activating the fabled curse, they often end up finishing among the leaders. During 2016, Gary Player scored a hole-in-one during his round. He was 80 at the time.
Even if you’re not a golf enthusiast, you’ll recognize these iconic figures. You may even feel a little star-struck in their presence.
It’s not only past legends that make an appearance on course either. Plenty of other celebs have been part of the action over the years too. Neil Horan, Glen Frey, Chris Evert, and Caroline Wozniacki are just a few of the stars from other genres who have acted as caddies during this fun event.
7. Golfers Can Relate
Despite its location in a section of the world’s best-known golf venue, the Master’s Par 3 event takes place over a comparatively easy course. It’s a challenge that even an average golfer could complete.
As a spectator, you’ll appreciate your heroes’ talents and efforts more this way. You could also pick up some tips when you watch them ace holes that are so similar to the ones you encounter on your rounds.
It’s partly thanks to this fact that your odds of seeing a hole-in-one happen before your eyes are pretty good during this tournament. So far, over 90 of these rare occurrences have happened in the history of the tournament, 9 of them during the 2016 event.
Discover the Joys of Golf
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