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Monday, July 16, 2012
Improvisers bring Claret Jug to mini-golf

By Patrick Dorsey



A few weeks back, the Claret Jug -- the decades-old trophy awarded to the British Open winner -- arrived in the U.S.

Knowing this -- and knowing they wanted to do something with it -- ESPN reps contacted Charlie Todd, creator of the New York-based troupe Improv Everywhere, a group of improvisers who pull off elaborate and surprising public stunts (known as "missions").

Their newest mission, as concocted by Todd: To turn a mini-golf hole into a major golf championship, all in front of ESPN cameras.

As you can see in the video above, mission accomplished.

And as you probably guessed, this took some planning.

Todd long had wanted to pull off this mini-golf prank. So when ESPN offered him the Claret Jug, Todd quickly said yes and (get it, improvisers?) set out to set the event up.

Todd had to secure caddie uniforms and, through ESPN, got them straight from Royal & Ancient for performers (known as "agents") Rob Lathan, Johnathan Fernandez, Birch Harms and Pat Cassels.







Pier 25 also gave Improv Everywhere full run of its course.







As for other agents with roles, Todd and Alex Scordelis performed color commentary, Neil Casey served as the course official and ESPN's own Jorge Andres did post-round interviews.









With everything planned and ready, the group then hid and waited for the right time to surprise various groups. And they were surprised -- but eventually pleased. Especially the ones who got to raise the same trophy Tiger Woods has thrice before.











For more photos and a full explanation of the day, visit Improv Everywhere's website.

Photos by Brian Fountain and Arin Sang-urai, courtesy of Improv Everywhere.