Originally created 04/03/00

Reception lets fans meet golfers



It's not the nineteenth hole, but Mayor Bob Young's second annual Masters Reception is as close as many Augustans will get to mingling with legendary golfers in town for the Masters Tournament.

No badge required, the free event being held today will afford local golf fans the opportunity to meet and greet some of the most noted names in golf.

After the success of last year's reception, which was held at Julian Smith Casino, the event has been moved to a bigger location this year: the Old Medical College at 598 Telfair St.

"Many people don't have exposure to the tournament unless they have a ticket," Mayor Young said. "What we're trying to do is have something to kick off Masters Week, something in a very public way so that the community can feel some connection."

Weather permitting, the party will take place outside on the grounds of the historic building, Mayor Young said. If it rains, the reception will be moved indoors. A cash bar also will be available.

Last year seven golfers attended the reception, and this year 10 are slated to appear. Some of those include three-time Masters champions Nick Faldo and Sam Snead, 1999 British Open Champion Paul Lawrie and 1959 Masters Champion Art Wall Jr.

The event will kick off at 6:30 p.m. with the mayor presenting each golfer with a key to the city.

"We thought the appropriate thing to do is to recognize them for their contributions (to golf)," Mayor Young said.

The party is being paid for with corporate sponsorships. While corporate sponsors had to be sought out last year, this year sponsors had to be turned away, Mayor Young said.

"There's not question about it, last year we were out asking people to sponsor it, and this year, we had people calling us," he said.

Those turned away will be placed on the list for next year's reception, he said.

Barnes & Noble Booksellers in Augusta West Shopping Center also will bring the tournament a little closer to the average Augustan. The book store is hosting a book signing at 7 p.m. for Catherine M. Lewis, author of Considerable Passions: Golf, the Masters, and the Legacy of Bobby Jones.

Reach Heidi Coryell at (706) 823-3215.

Masters Reception

Ten golfers are scheduled to appear at tonight's second annual Mayor's Masters Reception being held at the Old Medical College on 598 Telfair St. The event, which starts at 6:30, is free and open to the public:

Honorary guests are:

Sam Snead -- Master's Champion `49, `52, `54

Nick Faldo -- Masters Champion `89, `90, `96

Art Wall Jr. -- Masters Champion `59

Sergio Garcia -- Among Top 4 finishes & ties in `99 PGA Champion

Paul Lawrie -- British Open Champion `99

David Gossett -- U.S. Amateur Champion `99

Thomas Bjorn -- Among Top 50 in final world golf rankings `99

Retief Goosen -- Among Top 50 in final world golf rankings `99

Jean Van De Velde -- British Open Runner-up `99

Angel Cabrera -- Placed fourth British Open `99