Get Your (Tennis) Game On



The US Open, the biggest pro tennis event in the United States (and one of the four Grand Slam tournaments that are the sport’s most prestigious), returns to Flushing Meadows Corona Park August 29th through September 11th.  Opening night traditionally brings a lot of star power to the BJKNTC to entertain the crowds, but the line-up for the 2016 season is still under wraps. Stay tuned for details.

There have been some pretty major changes made to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center during the year.  For openers, the long-awaited retractable roof has been completed. This means no more weather-related cancellations . . . a bonus for the players and ticket holders alike.

Actually, most of the grounds have been renovated. The changes don’t stop at the roof. The USTA says they’ve upgraded 85 percent of the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center—renovating almost all of the side courts and adding seating which will increase total capacity on those courts by more than a third. They’ve also expanded walkways and added more concessions throughout the grounds. Options include Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, the upscale Aces wine and sushi bar, a glatt kosher cart and even a Carnegie Deli outpost. Bargain seekers can hit the street vendors near the grounds, too, though security won’t let you enter with outside snacks.

There’s also a brand-new 8,000-seat grandstand stadium, to replace the old one slated for demolition after this year’s tournament. In the years to come, the USTA plans for a new Louis Armstrong Stadium, with a retractable roof like the one on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Though this is tennis at its highest level, you can still pay as little as $35.00 (before fees) for an opening-night or early evening session ticket.  Admission  for Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day on August 27th is only $10.00. This year’s iteration of Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day is scheduled to include music from Flo Rida, Zara Larsson, Forever in Your Mind and others. There will also be interactive and entertaining tennis-related fun, including appearances by Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.

You can also attend—for free—the qualifying tournament (August 23–26), in which ambitious players battle for a berth in the main tournament, and practice day, August 28, when the stars hone their game in preparation for their moment in the spotlight.

Some helpful hints;

Use public transit. Parking is tough, and a spot will set you back $23.

If you are outside for a day session wear a hat and sunglasses, and apply plenty of sunscreen. Don’t forget to hydrate.  Seriously!

Like other big events, the US Open has a lengthy list of what is and is not allowed. Do yourself a favor and read up to prevent that awkward moment when you’re stopped at the gate because you can’t bring your doggy in to sit with you.

You don’t need a courtside ticket to get a great view—you just need to know where to look. If you buy a grounds pass, you’ll be able to see the pros at very close range on the numerous side courts, at a fraction of the cost of a courtside seat in one of  Stadiums.

Tickets for the event, and for Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day, can be purchased at, by calling Ticketmaster at 1-866-OPEN-TIX, at all Ticketmaster outlets or at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office.

US Open Tennis Championships

USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center

Flushing Meadows Corona Park

Flushing, New York 11368

718- 760-6200


The Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day Line-Up Is Guaranteed To Be A Grand Slam



Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day, an annual tennis/children’s event is what show business people would call the ‘opening act’ for the US Open.  Sponsored by the Hess Corporation, IBM and USTA, Kids’ Day honors the memory of tennis great Arthur Ashe, the 1968 winner of the inaugural US Open in which professionals could compete.  Ashe believed that troubled kids could be helped working through their problems by playing tennis and put forth every effort to bring the game into their lives.  Kids’ Day began in 1993, the year Ashe died.  Four years later Arthur Ashe Stadium replaced Louis Armstrong Stadium as the primary venue for the US Open.

There is much to do at the stadium. . . a musical performance, this year starring chart-topping pop-rock acts American Authors, Bea Miller, “hip-pop” duo Kalin and Myles, Flo Rida protégé Natalie La Rose and MTV’s “Artist to Watch” Jacob Whitesides, and a live tennis show featuring fun exhibition matches and skills competitions with guest Novak Djokovic and Marin Cilic.  Every youngster is allowed to play and/or watch the numerous tennis matches either before or after the concert. During the course of the day many tennis stars stop by to say ‘hello’, sign autographs and take pictures with the children.

“It’s a historic occasion for Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day, as we mark two decades of bringing the best in tennis and music together on a truly special day for families,” said Gordon Smith, USTA Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer.  “The event also captures the spirit and vigor of Arthur Ashe and is a fantastic way of encouraging youth to be active in tennis and life, while developing healthy habits early on.”

Proceeds from Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day benefit the USTA Foundation, which helps fund the National Junior Tennis & Learning Network (NJTL), a nationwide group of more than 600 nonprofit youth-development organizations that provide free or low-cost tennis, education and life-skills programming to more than 325,000 children each year.  Arthur Ashe, along with Charlie Pasarell and Sheridan Snyder, founded NJTL 46 years ago.

Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day will be held Saturday, August. 29th from 9:30am to 4:00pm, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.  ESPN2 will be televising the event, airing the tape on Sunday, August 30th from 1:00pm to 2:00pm to coincide with the official opening date of the US Open on Monday, August 31st.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day

USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center

124-02 Roosevelt Avenue

Flushing, New York 11368