What about Augusta’s other ‘Green Jacket’ ceremony

Bernie McGuire
|
|
What about Augusta’s other ‘Green Jacket’ ceremony

John Daly drives from the ninth tee during the second round of the PODS Championship at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club in Palm Harbor, Florida on March 9, 2007. Daly later withdrew from the tournament. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/PGA)

The Masters has been rescheduled for November but what about the other famous ‘Major’ contested just one mile down Washington Road in Augusta, Georgia.

It’s a major that needs no formal invitation – there’s a former champions dinner, no roped-off areas and you’re even allowed to use your mobile phones without fear of being pounced upon by over-zealous Pinkerton’s National Security Agency staff.

Of course, I’m speaking of the hosting of the Hooters Augusta Par-3 Bikini Contest.

While this year was to be the 84th hosting of the Masters, there’s no Coronavirus fears stopping the 37th anniversary of the founding on April 1st 1983 of Hooters by six businessmen in Clearwater, Florida. They only chose ‘April Fool’s Day’ believing their initiative would fail.

Little then did they know the franchise would now boast over 430 sites in 44 U.S. States, the Virgin Islands, Guam and 23 other countries.

For those who’ve never visited a Hooters, I’ll stop myself getting into any trouble by now letting ‘Wikipedia’ describe where the name Hooters originated.

“The Hooters name is a double entendre referring to both its owl logo, a bird known for its “hooting” calls, and an American slang term for women’s breasts popularized by comedian Steve Martin on the hit comedy series Saturday Night Live.”

From the front gates at Augusta National it’s exactly a mile to the front door of Hooters on Washington Road.

The place is a mecca for those 20, 30 and 40-something male spectators who’ve spent the day walking and watching the world’s best tackle Pink Dogwood, Flowering Peach, Caroline Cherry and Golden Bell as here’s the opportunity to have your ego pampered by a bevy of female beauties wearing tight-fitting white tank tops and orange-coloured short nylon shorts.

Also, and you’ve probably not noticed, but they’re wearing clean white track shoes and white socks while sporting a brown money pouch. And don’t be fooled, there’s no shortage of female patrons too so this is no male-only hangout.

I put my hands up as I’ve been to Hooters on a couple of occasions, simply to research a Masters ‘notebook’ item – honestly!  Besides, the beer is chilled, the food is not too bad and yes, the girls are engaging. Okay, I said it.

On one visit, I accompanied a few members of the Fleet Street press and here was the sight of a now retired colleague visiting the souvenir shop to purchase a few Hooters t-shirts for his grandchildren.

During Masters week, the owner boosts the normal number of 40 waitresses rostered to work in the restaurant by around an additional 60 women from all over the States. As well, the seating area is greatly enlarged with a tented structure.

On top of the now-famed Hooters Augusta Par-3 Bikini Contest, there’s the Hooters Green Jacket Bikini Contest and Hooters Miss Green Jacket Swimsuit Contest.

If you’re not interested in what is taking place on the cat-walk, there are putting greens outside where you can work on your short blade skills.

You won’t find defending and five-time Masters-winning Tiger Woods walking-in accompanied by Augusta National Chairman, Fred Ridley but you’ll surely bump into double-major winning John Daly.

Each year, Daly sets-up his huge RV in the parking lot of Hooters with plenty of ‘Loudmouth’ logo attire and obliging with many autographs and selfies.

Though one of the big fears for Daly, Hooters and all those other businesses is the on-going Augusta National land grab with the near Washington Road streetscape changing by the year.

Daly played in a dozen Masters from 1992 to 2006 and posted a best finish of T9th in his maiden appearance and then a T3rd a year later in 1993.

Since 2006, he’s been returning to Augusta almost every year.

“From what I understand, I was told Hooters signed a 20-year lease and they put me in the lease,” said Daly at last year’s Masters.

“Though I doubt I’ll be here by then as I’ll be 73, but you never know. All I know, as long as they don’t get mad at me for signing girl’s asses, I’m OK.”

Not sure how I follow that but let me leave you by saying there’s already been a comment about the conditions in the second week of an already winter-embraced November that will welcome the 94 invitees to Augusta National for the rescheduled Masters this year.

One thing is certain, there’ll be plenty of hot-blooded patrons breasting the bars at Hooters Augusta no matter what the weather’s like in November.

 

Stay ahead of the game. Subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest Irish Golfer news straight to your inbox!

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy & Terms of Service apply.

Latest Stories

Feature Interviews