The Masters is one of the best fan experiences in sports, and it’s perhaps the best in golf. There aren’t cell phones to distract people. There are rules to prevent goofballs from yelling obnoxious things. The expectation of decorum is a nice twist.
One of the other great things about the Masters is Augusta National patrons can use chairs to save seats around the 18th green and other spots on the course.
At Augusta National Golf Club, there are seating areas around certain portions of the course designated specifically for patrons with chairs. Almost universally, these chairs are the ones that cost $30 in the Augusta National and Masters merchandise shops, have a Masters logo on the bag, a translucent slot to put your name and no arms — never any arms. The patrons very politely arrange their chairs in rows, leaving them there until they want to come back and sit in those seats. The areas are roped off, so patrons without complying chairs can’t just stand there and take up space. With the chair sections typically higher up on hillsides, they amount to more comfortable grandstands with great views of multiple holes.
The secret to getting in these chair-only sections is to get to Augusta National Golf Club when the gates open, walk to the specific seating area(s) you want to plant your chair(s) and then put them down where you can in an orderly fashion. Then walk away and go enjoy your day until you’re ready to come back. No one will touch your chairs or, frankly, anything you store with them. There are security guards to make sure everything is on the up and up, so there’s no reason to fear. Grab some food, walk around the course, come back and enjoy.
Bringing chairs to the Masters is absolutely the right way to secure a great spot to watch the tournament, particularly during the weekend rounds. Come early, save a spot, then come back to catch whatever number of final groups coming through to wrap up their rounds. Then, on Championship Sunday and with the green jacket on the line, those chairs can offer a view of history as a new Masters champion is crowned. It didn’t cost anything extra (except the money for the chair) and the benefits of bringing the chair are remarkable. If you’re going to the Masters, make sure to get a chair.