U.S. Open Comes To New York

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The USTA announced that the US Open will once again kick off with Fan Week, a series of events and activations taking place both at the grounds of the US Open, the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, as well as at the US Open Experience at Brookfield Place, in Manhattan.  US Open Fan Week will begin on Tuesday, August 21 and extend through Sunday, August 26, with the main draw of the US Open starting on Monday, August 27.  All events and activities during Fan Week are free and open to the public, with the goal of giving all fans the opportunity to experience the excitement and atmosphere of the US Open.

 

The free and open events include:

 

US Open Qualifying Tournament – 8.21 – 8.24

The anchor event of Fan Week will be the 2018 US Open Qualifying Tournament, taking place Tuesday, August 21 through Friday, August 24, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.  Featuring 128 men and 128 women competing in the singles competition, the event awards the top 16 male and 16 female finishers with entry into their respective Main Draws. This year, the US Open Qualifying Tournament will award more than $3 million in prize money, making it one of the largest purses in American tennis.  Featuring players ranked in the top 250 in the world, this event gives fans the opportunity to watch truly world class tennis at no cost.

 

Player Practices – 8.21 – 8.26

Throughout Fan Week, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, visitors will have the chance to get an insider’s look at how the top players in the world prepare to compete for US Open glory.  Practice schedules will be accessible via USOpen.org, as well as the US Open mobile app and social media platforms.  A select number of marquee practices featuring some of the game’s biggest names, and US Open past champions, will take place in the Grandstand, giving the maximum number of fans access to these sessions.

 

US Open in Space powered by Net Generation #TminusNetGeneration – 8.21

On Tuesday, August 21, at 8 p.m., the US Open will celebrate the “global” nature of the sport with the help of NASA astronaut Andrew Feustel.  For the first time ever, the iconic World’s Fair Unisphere, in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, will serve as the literal backdrop for the first-ever tennis match in space. Feustel, ISS Commander of Expedition 56, will take part in the match with fellow crewmates Ricky Arnold, NASA Flight Engineer; Alexander Gerst, European Space Agency Flight Engineer; and Serena Aunon-Chancellor, NASA Flight Engineer.  The match will be 3D projection mapped on the Unisphere, giving fans the chance to watch tennis in an “out-of-this-world” way.Fans can watch the gravity-defying action unfold live from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET on the US Open’s Facebook page, YouTube and @usopen on Twitter’s Periscope.

 

New Louis Armstrong Stadium Dedication – 8.22

On Wednesday, August 22, the USTA will officially open the new Louis Armstrong Stadium with a dedication ceremony on “Queens Day” at the US Open.  The ceremony will feature USTA Chairman of the Board and President Katrina Adams, who will be joined by four-time US Open Champion and Queens native John McEnroe and a special performance by legendary jazz great Wynton Marsalis.  Following the dedication ceremony, McEnroe will be joined by his brother Patrick and by James Blake and Michael Chang for the honorary first match to be played in the new stadium.

 

US Open Experience at Brookfield Place – 8.22 – 8.23

For the second year, the USTA will recreate the energy and excitement of the US Open in lower Manhattan, this year at Brookfield Place just off West Street.  US Open partners American Express, Mercedes-Benz, Heineken and JP Morgan Chase all will provide unique interactive elements to the footprint.  Player appearances, food offerings, photo opportunities, and live music will combine with a full-sized tennis court in this one-of-a-kind tennis experience.  The US Open Experience will be open to the public on Wednesday, August 22 and Thursday, August 23, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day.  In addition, on Thursday, former ATP stars Taylor Dent, Robbie Ginepri, Justin Gimelstob and Luke Jensen, will take to the court and put on a doubles show in front of the fans.

 

US Open Draw Unveiling at the US Open Experience – 8.23

One of the headline events at the US Open Experience will be the US Open Draw Unveiling.  Taking place at 2 p.m., on Thursday, August 23, defending singles champions Sloane Stephens and Rafael Nadal are expected to make appearances, with analysts breaking down the potential path to the 2018 US Open championships. 

 

Legends Matches – 8.24 and 8.26

A number of legends matches have been scheduled for Fan Week, in addition to the Wednesday match in Louis Armstrong Stadium and Thursday match at the US Open Experience. On Friday, former US Open Champions Lindsay Davenport and Martina Navratilova will be joined by Michael Chang and Jan Michael-Gambill, while on Sunday, August 26, four US Open Champions – Davenport, Navratilova, Tracy Austin and Arantxa Sanchez Vicario – will face off in front of US Open fans.  Both matches will take place in the Grandstand.

 

US Open Media Day – 8.24

For the first time, US Open Media Day will be open to the public, giving fans the opportunity to hear some of tennis’ biggest names, including past US Open champions and rising stars, answer questions from media covering the US Open, just days before the start of the Main Draw.  The event will be held Friday, August 24, from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. in the new Louis Armstrong Stadium.

 

Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day powered by Net Generation – 8.25

Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day powered by Net Generation will be at held at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Saturday, August 25.  The annual festival of tennis, music and fun honors the legacy of legendary pioneer Arthur Ashe.  From 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., kids can try out Net Generation tennis during the free Grounds Festival, plus enjoy live music and other activities for families. In addition, there is a ticketed Stadium Show from 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. featuring top musical acts as well as some of the biggest WTA and ATP World Tour pros in fun exhibition matches and skills competitions.  Tickets for the Stadium Show can be purchased through Ticketmaster, www.USOpen.org and at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office.

 

Doubles Clinic powered by Net Generation – 8.26

Some of the biggest names in Doubles, including Mike and Bob Bryan, Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares and Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Lucie Safarova will take to the court on Sunday, August 26 to give aspiring tennis players from the tri-state area tips and advice on how to raise their game to the next level.  The event, powered by Net Generation, the youth initiative of the USTA which makes it easier than ever to get into the game, will be led by tennis expert Judy Murray.

 

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of the US Open, and throughout Fan Week and the Main Draw of the tournament, special recognitions and ceremonies will take place to honor the tradition and history of the event, as well as celebrate its great champions. In addition, the 2018 US Open marks the completion of the Strategic Transformation of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center with the opening of the new 14,000-seat Louis Armstrong Stadium. In all, the five-year project, which revamped more than 90 percent of the facility, will have incorporated the installation of a retractable roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium, the construction of a new Louis Armstrong Stadium (also with a retractable roof), a new Grandstand, new West Stadium and practice courts, as well as a completely renovated and redesigned southern campus.

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Elizabeth Johnson is editor of Manhasset Press and Manhasset Press Magazine. Growing up in nearby Garden City and attending New York University, she is well-versed in the locale and knowledgeable about the beat she covers. Her community involvement is extensive and includes the Manhasset SCA, Kiwanis International, Manhasset Chamber of Commerce, St. Mary’s Church, and various civic and local charitable organizations. Curious by nature, her travels, community service, love of the arts as well as local sports give her the inside view to unique content. During her time at Anton, she has received several awards from the New York Press Association and the Press Club of LI, including the coveted "Best Community Newspaper" several years in a row.

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