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Good Question: Why Does The Masters’ Winner Get A Green Jacket?

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(credit: CBS) Heather Brown
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Masters Golf Tournament is often called “a tradition unlike any other.”

Whoever wins it this Sunday will take home a unique prize that’s been handed out for the past 65 years – the Masters green jacket.

Only the 300 members or so of the Augusta National Golf Club (the exclusive list is secret), as well as the winners of the Masters are allowed to wear the jacket.

“I know Adam Scott paraded his around pretty good,” said Braemer golfer Gene LeClearc, a fan of the tournament.

During the 1930 British Open at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, Augusta National co-founder Bobby Jones noticed captains were wearing red jackets.

He and fellow Augusta co-founder, Clifford Roberts, brought that tradition back to their course with a different color – Masters green.

It’s not clear exactly why that color was chosen.

“Everything’s ‘Masters’ at the Masters,” said golfer Mike Longman of Minneapolis. “Masters potato chips, Masters pop.”

Augusta members started wearing the green jackets in 1937 so guests could easily identify them. The first winner’s jacket was given to Sam Snead in 1949. Jack Niklaus still holds the records for tournament wins at six.

The original green jackets were made with a heavier wool, but members didn’t like that material. So, now the material is lighter weight and made by one company in Ohio.

According to the Associated Press, members are allowed to take their custom-fit jackets off-premises for a year. They are then able to wear them again when they return to the Augusta National course.

Those winners don’t automatically get full-members status, but are considered honorary members at the club.

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