News 12 First at Five/ Friday, Apr. 6th, 2012
AUGUSTA, Ga --Three children with one dream -- to see the Masters. Friday that dream finally came true thanks to the Junior Pass Program at Augusta National. They partner with non-profits throughout the area to help kids ages eight to sixteen go to the Masters.This is an experience these children will never forget.
Excitement was in the air and a smile on her face as 10-year-old Katie Presnell got ready to walk in to Augusta National. "I just can't wait," she said. "It's awesome."
Katie is one of three kids Action Ministries Augusta took to the Masters Friday. Rick Herring is the executive director of Action Ministries Augusta. This is the third year they have participated in the program. "It's just one quiet thing that Augusta National does for the community that's so appreciated that again makes a life memory for the children and the adults," he said.
By Sunday they will have taken 36 people to the Masters. "To create memories four days, four people, each day is just something that means a lot to me personally," said Herring.
Many of these children would never be able to go to the masters if it weren't for this program. "One of the hardest tickets in all of sports is made available to some children that we help that would never have that chance and in some cases have had a tough time in life recently," he said.
Brothers Cameron Tate and Chris Simmons were also at the National. They had never even been on a golf course before and were very excited. "I get to see the famous golfers play," said Tate. "[I'm excited about] seeing the golfers, but I mostly wanna see Tiger Woods," said Simmons.
Herring said that isn't uncommon. "For every child, every trip it's been about Tiger Woods through the good times and bad," he said.
Friday is just as exciting for the chaperons as it for the kids. Danielle Meyer took the three kids and also experience her first Masters at the same time. "I'm really excited this is a really cool opportunity. I live here but this is the first time I'm getting a chance to go and I'm really excited that I'm doing with these super awesome kids and we're gonna have a really great time today."
And they did. The kids came out around 2pm. They were exhausted, but very happy, Their favorite part was seeing Tiger Woods. They stayed just long enough to see him tee off.