The Masters is an annual golf tournament held at Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia every year. It is widely considered to be the most prestigious golf tournament in the world. Just like every other major sporting event in 2020, the Masters looked a little bit different this year. In addition to banning fans from attending the event, Augusta National also had to make some changes to the annual celebrations leading up to the tournament. The most notable change came at the champion’s dinner.
What is the Champions Dinner?
The champions dinner is a special celebration held by Augusta National Golf Club to honor the previous winners of the Masters tournament. All of the living champions gather to enjoy a delicious meal together while honoring the previous year’s Masters champion. This tradition has been a major part of the Masters since 1952. With such a long and historical background, the tournament directors knew they had to find a way to hold the special event this year.
Safety Changes and Alterations
Since it is not safe right now for a large group of people to gather in a tight space, Augusta National Golf Club made several important changes to their annual event. The biggest change was moving the meal from the library to the trophy room. This new room provided ample space for the guests to gather safely. Instead of eating at one table, several long tables were placed in the trophy room. This allowed the guests to enjoy their meal while staying several feet apart from everyone else. This may have made the conversation a little more difficult, but it was far better than the alternative.
Notable Missing Guests
There are currently 33 former winners of the Masters still living today. Only 26 of these 33 former winners were able to make it to the champion’s dinner this year. The missing guests were Jackie Burke Jr, Tom Watson, Raymond Floyd, Fuzzy Zoeller, Angel Cabrera, Sergio Garcia, and Ian Woosman. Most of the guests that missed the dinner are at a higher risk of complications from the coronavirus due to their advanced age. Sergio Garcia planned to attend the event and play in the tournament, but he had to withdraw after testing positive for the virus.