BY JOE MARVILLI
The U.S. Open is just around the corner and Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day will once again kick off the festivities with fun for
the whole family.
Taking place on Saturday, the 18th iteration of the family-focused event will include a ticketed stadium show and concert inside Arthur Ashe Stadium and a free festival at the United States Tennis Association Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. This Kids Day will have a very special guest that should grab the attention of children and adults alike.
First Lady Michelle Obama will make an appearance during the festivities to speak and encourage young
people to stay active and healthy. She is expected to be introduced by tennis champion Serena Williams.
Some of the fun at the Grounds Festival, starting at 9:30 a.m., includes face painting, a juggling workshop, hair beading and braiding, storytelling, balloon artists, appearances by Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob, Patrick, Dora and Diego. Over in the Louis Armstrong Stadium, Grandstand and Court 17, attendees will have the chance to watch the pro tennis players practice.
There will also be several different tennis workshops and competitions for different age groups throughout
the day on the courts surrounding the stadium.
Even though they may not go to the stadium concert, these kids will not be locked out of hearing some tunes. The Hess Express Stage will give families the chance to hear some music without paying for the stadium show. The concert will run from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Lucki Gurlz will perform at 10 a.m., Kenton Duty at 10:30 a.m., Trevor Jackson at 11 a.m., Megan Nicole at 11:30 a.m. and finally Before You Exit at noon.
During the paid concert in Arthur Ashe Stadium, attendees will get to enjoy sets from Ariana Grande, Austin Mahone, Coco Jones, Lawson and Cazzette. Tennis superstars Williams and Novak Djokovic will make appearances during the show, as will the world’s number one wheelchair tennis champion, David Wagner.
Tickets are available through Ticketmaster, www.usopen.org or at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office. General admission promenade tickets cost $10 and loge tickets are $20. The concert starts at 1 p.m. and runs until 3 p.m.
While attendees may show up for the activities and performances, they are also supporting a good cause.
Proceeds from Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day will help support USTA Serves, the USTA’s national charitable foundation,
and the National Junior Tennis and Learning network.
Children ages 12 and under with stadium-show tickets will receive a free Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day hat from the USTA and Hess on a first-come, first-served basis.
“Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day presented by Hess has grown into the largest single-day, grass-roots tennis and entertainment event in the world,” Dave Haggerty, USTA Chairman, CEO and President, said. “AAKD kicks off the U.S. Open with the hottest musical acts of summer and some of the world’s best tennis players, all coming together to celebrate the life and values of tennis legend and humanitarian Arthur Ashe.”
CBS will broadcast selections from Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day on Aug. 25, from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. The event will kick off the U.S. Open, which will run from Aug. 26 to Sept. 9.
Reach Joe Marvilli at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 125, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @Joey788.