Here’s the best kept secret in New York.
The US Open qualifying tournament started today at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and you can be one of the first people to see the warm up to the main draw next week.
And here’s the best part. It’s free to get in.
Where else can you see professional tennis without a cover charge? The grounds are open and you will be able to watch some up-and-comers as they try for the main draw of the Open.
Before you wonder why this wasn’t mentioned yesterday, the tournament is going on until Friday, so there’s still time.
At this late summer date, it’s a perfect time to see tennis in the park and if you don’t want to watch the matches on the side courts, Louis Armstrong Stadium – in its last year – the old Grandstand, and Court 17 and the new Grandstand will have the name players practicing and warming up throughout the week.
It’s more of a relaxed atmosphere and a perfect time to get an autograph or two.
Now there are a few caveats.
First, not everything is open and many of the kiosks are getting ready for the tournament next week. You will see a number of boxes being loaded and it does seem like you may miss out on a few things.
Secondly, although admission is free, the food court does charge full price, so expects to pay US Open prices for the qualifying tournament.
But if that doesn’t stop you, then come on down and have some fun.
Remember this is the first year of the renovated South Campus, so you get to see the new Grandstand Stadium and renovated outer courts without the large crowds you will endure next week. It will give you time to explore and get acclimated to the changes.
So if you are a tennis fan and have some time off, then this is a no-brainer. This is free tennis for those who want to stop by the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
What a great way to spend the week.
Just keep it our little secret.