The first week of April marks the annual tradition unlike any other: the haunting reminder that you’ll almost certainly never have the chance to play one of the most historic and gorgeous golf courses in the world. Augusta National is infamous for having one of the most exclusive memberships of any club, consistently hovering around 300 members. Unlike most country clubs, there is no “application” to become a member; they invite YOU if you’re fortunate enough to make the cut. That said, there still has to be a way for you to get on, right? Outlook is not so good, here’s why:
You don’t know Bill Gates or Condoleezza Rice
If you’re not a member, generally the easiest way to play a private course is to get invited out by someone who is a member. But one of the repercussions of keeping such an exclusive membership is that Augusta National members are among the country’s most elite and powerful people (despite membership costs rumored to be less than most premier clubs). Better start making connections.
Your Handicap Index is 15
There are two opportunities a year to play at Augusta that don’t require being or knowing a member. All you have to do is qualify for The Masters or Augusta National Women’s Amateur. Unfortunately, these aren’t net events, so that 92 you fired off last weekend isn’t helping.
You live and work in California
There is another way to get in to Augusta: caddies and employees of the club can play once a year. That’s assuming you have the freedom to make a career change and pack up and move to Georgia, as well as being able to apply for and land a job there. Oh, and I hope you’re ok with part-time; the club is closed from May to October each year.
Green’s not your color
“Pantone 342”, to be specific. That’s the official color of one of the most iconic “trophies” in sports. Not only is it granted to the winner of The Masters each year, but each member of Augusta National has their own green jacket to wear around the club. Not everyone can pull it off.
Private clubs just aren’t your thing
Don’t get me wrong, there’s plenty of appeal to joining a private country club (just ask the over 74,000 private club members in SoCal alone). You can gain access to some of the greatest courses the world has to offer, not to mention all the other perks and amenities that come with membership. That said, maybe you’re just as happy to knock the ball around your local muni.
So what now for Joe and Jane Golfer?
Lucky for you, you don’t need to step foot on the property at Augusta to enjoy your ideal golf experience. There are thousands of clubs right here at home. For example:
Play in SoCal tournaments and championships.
…and maybe take home some unique hardware or a Green Jacket of your own…
Establish connections with other golfers like you.
Ready to play a round on your schedule? Check out these great groups…
Kevin is a born and raised Southern California golfer. His golf highlights include occasionally breaking 90, losing an entire dozen balls in one round, and sinking a 20 foot putt on camera on the first take. Kevin is a member of Tiny Putters Golf and his current Handicap Index is none of your business.