Whether you're a big golf fan or not, you can't live in the South and not get at least somewhat excited about Masters week.
After last year's rite of springtime was postponed with the tournament being played just five months ago during November, the anticipation in 2021 is beyond the norm.
Golf's best players are at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia, this week for the first of the pro game's four majors -- the one we join others in calling the greatest.
Tough appreciating Augusta National in the fall with that season's unique beauty, it will be so good to again see the azaleas and dogwoods in bloom everywhere as golfers make their way through the Georgia pines and around Amen Corner to crowning a champion on Sunday.
The Masters is a special tournament and Augusta National is a special place.
Here's the story per masters.com:
"Augusta National Golf Club was founded by Bobby Jones, the legendary amateur champion, and Clifford Roberts, an astute investment banker in New York. Upon his retirement from championship golf in 1930, Jones had hoped to realize his dream of building a golf course. Following a brief conversation with Roberts, with whom Jones had met several times during the mid-1920s, it was decided the club would be built near Augusta, Georgia, provided a suitable piece of ground was available.
"Thomas Barrett Jr., a mutual friend of Jones and Roberts, was consulted and recommended a 365-acre property called Fruitland Nurseries. An option was taken on the property for $70,000. It was decided to establish a national membership for the club, and Jones proposed Augusta National would be an appropriate name. Construction on the new course began in the first half of 1931 and the course opened in December 1932 with a limited amount of member play. Formal opening took place in January 1933.
"Looking to provide a service to golf by hosting a tournament, Jones and Roberts decided to hold an annual event beginning in 1934. The final decision was made at a meeting in New York at the office of club member W. Alton Jones. Roberts proposed the event be called the Masters Tournament, but Bobby Jones objected, thinking it too presumptuous. The name Augusta National Invitation Tournament was adopted and the title was used for five years until 1939, when Jones relented and the name was officially changed. The first tournament was held March 22, 1934, and beginning in 1940, the Masters was scheduled each year during the first full week in April."
The history and lore are as much a part of this week's event as the golf, but the Masters is still foremost about great golf. If you're a fan, expect to see it and feel the excitement building toward the back nine on Sunday.
And if you're just a person interested in seeing nature's beauty amid the spectacle of one of the world's greatest sporting events, tune in. You won't regret it.