Can you tell me where August went? If you know, please leave a comment below! I can't believe how fast this month has flown by, and it's time for the US Open tennis tournament this Monday! I have been attending the tournament since 1994, and it has grown so much since that time. Seeing tennis live in person is much more exciting than on the television, and of course, being in New York City, is even better! It is one of "the" places to be the last few weeks of summer, and Labor Day weekend in New York City. I am so thrilled ESPN is taking over the television coverage, as NBC did a terrible job all those years. I really miss when USA network covered it, they did a fabulous job each year.
Here is some information from the US Open website about new things going on for this year's tournament, along with my original photos in between.
Free Grounds Admission on Thursday, Sept. 10: For the first time at the US Open, complimentary grounds admission will be offered to all fans who come during the day on the tournament’s second Thursday, Sept. 10. The day’s play will be filled with doubles, including the men’s and women’s doubles semifinals, as well as action in the Champions Invitational, American Collegiate Invitational, US Open Junior Championships and US Open Wheelchair Tennis Competition. Click here for more information.
Return to a Traditional Grand Slam Schedule: For 2015, the US Open returns to a traditional 14-day Grand Slam tournament schedule, with the men’s first round being completed over two days rather than three. The new schedule calls for the women’s singles semifinals to be played the evening of Thursday, Sept. 10, and the men’s singles semifinals to be played on Friday, Sept. 11. Finals Weekend begins with the women’s singles championship on Saturday, Sept. 12, & concludes with the men’s singles championship on Sunday, Sept. 13.Click here for more.
Full TV Coverage on ESPN: For the first time, ESPN will be the exclusive live domestic media partner of the US Open. Over the course of the 2015 US Open, ESPN and ESPN2 will combine to air more than 130 hours of live match play, with more than 1,100 hours of coverage to be seen on ESPN3, which also will be available on USOpen.org and through the US Open app – providing a “digital grounds pass” for tennis fans.
Also, in an expansion of its prior US Open coverage, ESPN will feature play from 11 courts (up from seven last year). New TV courts this year include courts 4, 6, 7 and 10, which will be available for viewing over the first five days of the tournament. Click here for more.
US Open Live Shows: Fans can tune in to USOpen.org every morning at 10:45 a.m. ET to watch “Inside the Baseline” presented by IBM for a look ahead to all the day’s matches, and return each evening at 7 p.m., to “Beyond the Baseline” presented by Westin Hotels & Resorts for an inside look at what goes on behind the scenes at the US Open. Fans in attendance at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center can stop by the Baseline Stage each morning and evening for the live taping of these shows.
Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day Presented by Hess: For the 20th consecutive year, Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day presented by Hess kicks off the US Open on Saturday, Aug. 29, airing for the first time on the ESPN network on Sunday, Aug. 30 from 1 to 2 p.m. ET. This year’s celebration of tennis and entertainment will be hosted by fitness guru Shaun T and features US Open champions Serena Williams, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Marin Cilic and Rafael Nadal as well as musical acts Bea Miller, Kalin and Myles, Jacob Whitesides, Natalie La Rose and American Authors.
Opening Night Celebration: Internationally renowned singer-songwriter Josh Groban will perform at the Opening Night Ceremony in Arthur Ashe Stadium prior to the evening session on Monday, Aug. 31. Groban will perform a medley from his recent release, “Stages.” Following Groban’s performance, noted actress and performer Vanessa Williams will sing the national anthem. Her performance will be accompanied by honor guards representing the NYPD and FDNY
Nightly Light Show: The new roof superstructure over Arthur Ashe Stadium will also star in a nightly light show that will highlight the steel truss and catwalk system. The light show will take place between the two evening matches in concert with the performance of “America the Beautiful” by the US Open Casting Call winners.
Original Nine Celebration: USTA President and US Open Chairwoman Katrina Adams will celebrate the “Original Nine,” the nine women responsible for helping to form the original professional women’s tennis tour, which ultimately evolved into the WTA. The celebration will include a special video tribute as well as on-court recognition of these sports pioneers.
US Open American Express Fan Experience: Now in its fifth year, the US Open American Express Fan Experience has been completely overhauled with new technological features. One of the new offerings is “You vs. Sharapova,” where virtual reality technology and computer-generated images filmed with Sharapova allow fans to play a pro at the top of her game. Also, with “Epic Matchup,” fans will be able to star in their very own shareable video simulating a rally from the baseline in Arthur Ashe Stadium.
Charging Stations presented by Chase: To help fans stay connected throughout the day, Chase will be providing complimentary charging stations for phones and tablets throughout the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center grounds. The stations will be located in a dedicated Chase booth near the Food Village, in the South Plaza, and on the Club Level of Arthur Ashe Stadium.Open Access is a new fan enhancement available for all US Open patrons, allowing fans to register to participate in activities throughout the grounds – ranging from customized photo opportunities to interactive games. Fans will receive a QR code to scan at each location; subsequently, you will receive an email with access to your own personal webpage that will showcase your US Open experience. Fans who sign up for Open Access are entered to win tickets to the 2016 US Open men’s or women’s finals – and the more you scan your QR code on-site, the more chances there are to win a US Open Ultimate Fan Pack.
US Open Streak Challenge: Fans can play along with the US Open Streak Challenge presented by Esurance and test their US Open tennis knowledge with two questions every day about players, matches and tournament stats. Keep answering correctly and you’ll add to your streak and move up the leaderboard.
New Food Offerings: Lavazza coffee, Jacob’s Creek wines and Juice Press cold-pressed juices join the US Open for 2015. All will be available on-site to US Open guests.
One of my favorite photos from the 2010 Arthur Ashe Kids Day which I attended with Tennis Panorama site as press. You can check out my full post HERE and HERE of the fun day, and for all tennis news and updates, Tennis Panorama is a fantastic website!
Have any of you attended the US Open? It is such a great end of summer tournament, and with even more improvements coming to the facility, it's going to continue to be a top notch event!
US Open Tennis
August 31 to September 13, 2015
Corona Park Queens