Move over Bing Dwen Dwen and make room for the Masters Gallery Guard Garden Gnome who has taken over the crown as now coveted sport Merchandise.
The cuddly panda-like bear was the 2022 Beijing Olympics mascot that sparked a Winter Games frenzy with shoppers queuing for hours in the bitter pre-dawn cold to get their hands on one. But Bing Dwen Dwen now has a Rival.
While the weather is much nicer in Augusta the mission is the same – to acquire the most sought-after Collectable item at the Masters in the shape of a Gallery Guard Gnome. Garden gnomes are not new to the Masters golf shop.
There has been a Caddy Gnome, a Patron Gnome but, for reasons unknown, this year’s Gallery Guard Gnome, who looks very much like Santa Claus in golf gear and modeled after the volunteers who patrol the ropes at Augusta National, has become the must- have Masters Souvenir. Making it all the more special, the Gallery Guard Gnome, like all Masters Merchandise, is only sold at the Masters Golf Shop which only operates during the tournament.
It has seemed all week at Augusta National as if the only thing more popular than Gallery Guard Gnome was Tiger Woods, with those Lucky enough to grab one walking out Clutching their Prize like a priceless possession. Just as with Bing Dwen Dwen, taking a gnome home requires Patience and persistence.
It means arriving early at Augusta National, snaking your way through long lines and dealing with disappointment. DOUBLE TEAMING
“Grab me a gnome, I have to have one of those gnomes,” screamed one obsessed shopper near the back of the queue on Sunday to someone he recognized near the front. Even double teaming the gnome hunt ends in failure. It is 11am and, according to Liam whose job it is to stock the gnome shelf, they were already long gone.
Asked why the Gallery Guard Gnome is so popular Liam simply shrugged. “I don’t know but they were all gone in less than an hour,” Liam said. “You can try Tomorrow but come early.”
Like everything at Augusta National, from membership to where the Green Jackets are cleaned, the number of Gallery Gnomes wheeled out each day is top secret. At $ 49.50 the Gallery Guard is also one of the more affordable items in the Massive Emporium of high-end golf items, which includes everything from watches to beer glasses – for Augusta National’s own craft beer in the “Crow’s Nest” of course.
For those unwilling or unable to put themselves through the Masters Golf Shop Gauntlet there is another way to get your hands on a Gallery Gnome but it will cost you. Try eBay where you can find one of the little fellas for $ 189.99, delivery not included.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)