Samantha Crawford Wins Girls Junior Championship

FLUSHING, N.Y., September 9, 2012 – The United States Tennis Association (USTA) today announced that American Samantha Crawford of Atlanta, Ga., captured the 2012 US Open Girls’ Junior Championship with a 7-5, 6-3 victory over No. 12 seed Anett Kontaveit of Estonia at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on Sunday. Crawford, who currently trains at the USTA National Training Center in Boca Raton, Fla., is the second consecutive American to win the US Open Junior Girls’ title, and the third in the past five years.

“We are extremely proud of Sam and the total team effort of her family, coach Kathy Rinaldi and the entire USTA Player Development team Boca Raton,” said USTA General Manager, Player Development Patrick McEnroe.

Crawford follows Grace Min, in 2011, and CoCo Vandeweghe, in 2008, as Americans to win US Open Junior titles in the last five years. Crawford’s victory also completes an American sweep of the 2012 US Open Junior Girls’ titles after Taylor Townsend, of Jonesboro, Ga., and Gabrielle Andrews, of Pomona, Calif., won the doubles championship on Saturday.

Crawford, a 17-year-old wild card in the 2012 US Open Junior Championship, defeated five of the Top 12 seeds to win her first major girls’ singles title and cap an impressive summer. Crawford, as a wild card, qualified for the US Open singles main draw and took Great Britain’s Laura Robson to a second-set tiebreak in the first round. She also played in the US Open women’s doubles and mixed doubles main draws, earning a wild card entry into the former after winning the USTA Girls’ 18s Nationals doubles title with partner Allie Kiick, of Plantation, Fla.

Crawford was playing in just her fifth ITF world junior circuit event of the year. Prior to the US Open, she played in two USTA Pro Circuit $50,000 events in 2012, reaching the final in Yakima, Wash., and the semifinal in Sacramento.

Q & A With Bill Mountford of World Team Tennis

World Team Tennis completed another successful season back in July. With a unique format and fast action, it’s no wonder it has been around for 35 years.

But what about its future? Well today, Tennis Ledger is proud to interview Bill Mountford, the former Director of the National Tennis Center and the LTA in England, who is currently Vice President of WTT.

Tennis Ledger: Tell us a little about the Elton John event in Washington, DC this November.

Bill Mountford: WTT Smash Hits presented by GEICO is an annual charity event co-hosted by longtime friends Billie Jean King and Sir Elton John. Elton is a huge tennis fan and wanted to do something in the tennis community so he teamed up with Billie Jean to create Smash Hits. The money raised from this tennis event and pre-match reception, as well as the live auction, will benefit the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the Washington AIDS Partnership. This is the first time in the event’s 18 year history that it will be held in the Washington, D.C. area. It’s a great night of tennis for a great cause. The talent is unbelievable – Andre Agassi, Stefanie Graf, James Blake, Anna Kournikova and we will be adding more names. All these tennis greats volunteer their time and talents and the quality of tennis is terrific. (NOTE: visit www.WTT.com/SmashHits for information and tickets.)

TL: How would you assess this past season of WTT?

BM: The 2010 season was a great celebration of the 35-season legacy of World TeamTennis. We had a season loaded with top players like Kim Clijsters, Venus Williams, Andy Roddick, John McEnroe and the return of Martina Hingis among so many other recognizable names. In the WTT Pro League, we like to showcase three generations of tennis and bring quality, professional team tennis to supportive markets. Only two of our 10 markets have other big-time professional tennis events, so we recognize that it is vital to showcasing our sport in this country. Our 35th season culminated with one of the most exciting finals in recent history with the Kansas City Explorers winning their first-ever WTT Championship before a standing-room-only hometown crowd. It was a great finish to a memorable season.

TL: Are there any expansion plans on the horizon?

BM: As far as the WTT Pro League is concerned, we are not looking to expand beyond 10 teams in the U.S. right now. However we are discussing opportunities to take World TeamTennis to international markets. We had a successful WTT exhibition event at the 2010 Australian Open and we hope to build on that. On the Recreational TeamTennis side of the business, we are always seeking opportunities to establish new leagues in new markets. These WTT “Rec Leagues” are a great compliment to USTA Leagues all over the country, and there are 16,000 players who currently participate. We’d all love to see that number continue to grow.

TL: Any new innovations anticipated for 2011?

BM: We have begun preparations for the 2011 WTT Pro League season and we surely remain open to trying new things. My “blink” response to the question would be: “Yes!” WTT has been long been viewed as the “think tank” for professional tennis and we enjoy our role as innovators. It is likely that a few of our new ideas for the pro league – and for the overall betterment of our sport – will be put forth. Stay tuned on this…

TL: How actively involved is Billie Jean King with WTT?

BM: Billie Jean remains quite active with World TeamTennis, and WTT will always be a big part of her legacy in the sport. Along with CEO Ilana Kloss, she certainly remains the leading ambassador and spokesperson for WTT. Billie Jean has often said that if you want to see her philosophy on life, then you should watch a World TeamTennis match because it showcases men and women working together with equal contributions.

Richard Kent is the author of the tennis books “Inside The US Open” and “The Racket.”

After The Win, Nadal Basks In Glory

In the city that never sleeps, Rafael Nadal wasn’t resting on his laurels after capturing his first career US Open to complete the career Grand Slam on Monday night. The World No. 1 stayed on site at the Billie Jean King USTA National Tennis Center until after 1 a.m. Tuesday morning, celebrating with his family and friends, making a point to personally thank the members of the USTA staff for running the tournament and conducting interviews with Spanish television.

“I had the control antidoping, and saying hello, all the US Open staff and say thanks, everybody, for the organization, for the facilities that they give me, they give to me,” Nadal said in explaining his activity immediately after he crashed to the court following championship point.  “After that, I was with the authorities, they came, thank you very much. And the president of the Spanish Federation and the family.  Just be out there for the family for a few minutes, and afterward I was in the locker room organization, and having organizing all the clothes.”

So exactly what did Nadal do the morning after his triumph in New York City?

Nadal and girlfriend Xisca, who sat by herself in the player dining area gazing out of the window and watching the rain fall during the one hour, 47-minute rain delay that interrupted the men’s final, sat side-by-side in a van that took the pair back to their Manhattan hotel after 1 a.m. on Tuesday morning.

The nine-time Grand Slam champion only got about three hours of sleep before heading to Times Square with his family and management team for a photo shoot across the street from the Hard Rock Cafe.

Tourists and fans, seeing the swarm of photographers waiting and blue police barricades set up in Times Square knew something was about to happen and began to crowd the area.

Nadal and his team rolled up, he jumped out of a car and posed for a series of photos while fans screamed support (and a couple of marriage proposals) in his direction. An immensely popular presence in New York, Nadal acknowledged the crowd then it was back in the car for the short ride to Nike Town in mid-town Manhattan where fellow Nike endorser and tennis television analyst John McEnroe, who picked Nadal to win the Open before the tournament began last month, conducted a question and answer session in front of fans wearing Nike Nadal t-shirts staffers passed out at the door.

At the start of the interview McEnroe asked Nadal the question that had long been on his mind.

“How are you so damn humble?” McEnroe asked. “(You must be thinking) Why is this old man asking me these boring questions I want to get the hell out of here  and go home.”

A grinning Nadal replied: “Always a pleasure to talk to you John. That’s the only thing I can do (be nice to people). There are people out there every day waiting for a photo. That’s the normal thing to do. That’s my opinion.”

An unconvinced McEnroe shot back, “I tell them to get a life sometimes” prompting laughter from both the crowd and Nadal.

Nadal said life in Mallorca has shaped the player and man he has become.

“It’s part of the character in Mallorca; we are very relaxed,” Nadal said. “The life there goes a
little slower than here in New York so for that reason I am more relaxed on court.”

Completing the career Grand Slam on Arthur Ashe Stadium Court, Nadal fell to his back in a complete collapse and said his match point moment was purely a physical response.

“You don’t have control of your body at that moment,” Nadal said. “I don’t have any plan to go down when I win the title. When I won the last point I am (there).”

Rich Pagliaro is the editor of TennisNow.com.

US Open and Levy Restaurants Donate 21,000 Pounds of Food to City Harvest

New York, NY – Sept. 14, 2010 — The United States Tennis Association (USTA) and Levy Restaurants, the official restaurateur of the US Open, teamed up to donate more than 21,000 pounds of unused food to City Harvest following the 2010 US Open.

City Harvest, the world’s first food rescue organization, is dedicated to feeding New York City’s hungry men, women, and children. In the week following the US Open, City Harvest delivered rescued food to soup kitchens and food pantries across the five boroughs.

“The USTA is focused on being a responsible member of the greater New York City community,” said Danny Zausner, Managing Director, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.  “This commitment includes reducing the environmental footprint of the US Open and providing for others in need.  Donating unused food from the US Open, in coordination with our partner, Levy Restaurants, is a great way to help City Harvest feed our neighbors in the five boroughs.”

“We are very thankful to the USTA and Levy Restaurants and for this generous donation,” said Jilly Stephens, Executive Director at City Harvest.  “Our long-standing partnership with the US Open demonstrates their commitment to helping us feed hungry New Yorkers,” she added.

Led by Executive Chef Michael Lockard, Levy Restaurants utilized a 250-person culinary team to serve the crowd of more than 700,000 at the US Open Aug. 30 – Sept. 12. Fans had dining options at five restaurants, 60 concession stands and 100 suites on the grounds. Creating a more eco-friendly sports experience, the USTA and Levy Restaurants introduced many new green initiatives this year, including composting of kitchen waste and sourcing of more than 10 percent of all produce from local and regional farms.

Donated food items included: bread, grains, fresh and frozen produce, seafood, dairy, juices and more. Four truckloads of food were picked up by City Harvest in the days following the US Open’s conclusion. The Bethesda Missionary Baptist Church in Jamaica, Queens received lettuce, celery, yogurt, bread, and milk; Five Loaves and Two Fishes in Brooklyn received hamburgers, rolls, salads, peppers, cucumbers and cheeses; Community Food Pantry of Highbridge in the Bronx received a variety of dairy products including cream, milk, and cheese, frozen vegetables, fresh produce and herbs. Additional locations receiving donations included the Hope Line Resource Center in the Bronx and Child Development Support Corporation in Brooklyn.

City Harvest has collected food donations from the US Open for more than 10 years and from Levy Restaurants for the last three years.  City Harvest has collected more than 270,000 pounds of food from the US Open since 1998.

# # #

About USTA

The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the U.S. and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level — from local communities to the highest level of the professional game.  A not-for-profit organization with nearly 750,000 members, it invests 100% of its proceeds in growing the game.  It owns and operates the US Open, and launched the Olympus US Open Series linking 10 summer tournaments to the US Open.  In addition, it owns the 90-plus Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S., is a minority owner and promotional partner of World TeamTennis, and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games.  USTA Serves, the National Charitable Foundation of the USTA, provides financial support for disadvantaged youth and people with disabilities through tennis and education programs.  For more information on the USTA, log on to usta.com.

About City Harvest

Now serving New York City for more than 25 years, City Harvest (www.CityHarvest.org) is the world’s first food rescue organization, dedicated to feeding the city’s hungry men, women, and children. This year, City Harvest will collect more than 25 million pounds of excess food from all segments of the food industry, including restaurants, grocers, corporate cafeterias, manufacturers, and farms. This food is then delivered free of charge to nearly 600 community food programs using a fleet of trucks and bikes as well as volunteers on foot. Each week, City Harvest helps over 260,000 hungry New Yorkers find their next meal.

About Levy Restaurants

Levy Restaurants, founded in Chicago in 1978, is recognized as one of America’s fastest growing and most critically acclaimed restaurant companies, and is the leader in premium sports and entertainment dining concessions. Levy was recently named one of the 10 most innovative companies in sports in the world by Fast Company magazine. The company’s diverse portfolio includes award-winning restaurants such as James Beard-winning Spiaggia and Bistro 110 in Chicago, Fulton’s Crab House, Portobello and Wolfgang Puck Grand Café at Walt Disney World Resort, renowned sports and entertainment venues like Lambeau Field in Green Bay, STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, and American Airlines Arena in Miami, and events including the Super Bowl, World Series, Kentucky Derby, NHL and NBA All-Star Games and the Grammy Awards. For details, visit www.levyrestaurants.com.

Zvonareva Goes To Finals After Darkening Sunshine

FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – It was fitting the clouds started to cover the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center after Vera Zvonareva whisked Caroline Wozniacki out of the tournament, because Sunshine set.

The Russian’s 6-4 6-3 win over the No. 1 seed raised a few eyebrows – especially the CBS executives who wanted to see the rising star in the finals – but it didn’t surprise the hardcore tennis fans, who saw Zvonareva lost to Serena Williams in the Wimbledon finals. Much like Wozniacki, she is also a rising star, who went from the 21st seed at Roland Garros to No. 7 here in Flushing.

“I always believe in myself,” Zvonareva said.  “I always believe I can beat anyone on the other side of the net if I’m able to play my best tennis.  There is nothing really changed for me, you know.  I know I’m not gonna play perfect tennis all the time, like most of the players, but that’s what we all trying to do.

“I know if I’m doing it, if I’m playing well, I can beat anyone.”

Today she proved just that. Controlling the match from the outset, the 26 year-old was able to break and then hold Wozniacki during the third game of the first set to easily cruse to a 6-4 win.  Zvonareva was able to control the match from the baseline, putting her younger opponent on heels, running from side to side, trying to track down balls.

“I think it’s the same probably as the previous match, very similar,” Zvonareva said. “It’s the right balance between being patient and being aggressive.  You know, with those windy conditions you have to play sometimes ugly, you know.  You don’t have to expect to play your best tennis.”

“That’s what I did well.  I was not expecting to play my best tennis, but, you know, I was trying to be patient when I needed, and step up when I got the chance.”

She got chances also early in the she when she went up a break, but Wozniacki broke back to show some fight. Yet, that game was the last the Pilot Pen winner won, as Zvonareva was able to break back and then serve for the win.

“She played a really good game, definitely,” Wozniacki said.  “You know, she was not missing a lot.  She was going for her shots.  Most things were going in.  You know, I had chances, and I don’t know, I made some mistakes today that I usually don’t do.

“Yeah, it was a tough day for me in the office, and unfortunately it was today.  That’s the way tennis is sometimes.”

Now Zvonareva will look for her first Grand Slam win by taking on Kim Clijsters tomorrow night. It will be a very interesting matchup as Clijsters is undefeated in Flushing Meadows since her comeback last year and leads the head to head matchup 5-2, but the two losses came this year. One at Wimbledon and then later this summer in Montreal.

“Any match with Kim will come down to the tough challenge, you know,” Zvonareva said.  “She’s a great mover on the court.  She has a lot of experience.  She won here last year.  You know, it’s going to be tough.  You know, we played a couple of matches for the past couple of months, but those matches are in the past.

“I will think about what worked the best for me, and I will try to take it with me tomorrow, and, you know, do it again.  Those things that didn’t work well for me, I tried to avoid them.  That’s it.”

And as for Wozniacki, it’s back to the drawing board for her Grand Slam, but as Annie once sung, “The sun will come out tomorrow.”

That means Sunshine as well.

Jan Kodes Hosts Book signings During Open

1971, 1973 US Open Finalist To Sign Copies of “JAN KODES: A JOURNEY TO GLORY FROM BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN” at US Open Bookstore and Czech Restaurant “Café Prague” During 2010 US Open

Coffee Table Book Provides Narrative and Illustrated History of Czech Tennis

NEW YORK – Former Wimbledon champion and two-time U.S. Open finalist Jan Kodes of the Czech Republic will host two additional signings for his new book “JAN KODES: A JOURNEY TO GLORY FROM BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN” during the 2010 US Open.

Kodes will host a signing on Sunday, September 5 at 5 pm at the US Open Bookstore on site at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Kodes will also sign copies of his book at Café Prague, an authentic Czech coffee house in mid-town Manhattan at 2 West 19th Street at Fifth Avenue on Friday, September 10 at 3 pm. Kodes hosted his first book signing at the US Open bookstore on Thursday.

The coffee table book, originally published in Czech, provides a narrative and illustrated history of Czech tennis through the eyes of Kodes and author Peter Kolar. The book, filled with hundreds of unique and personal photographs, documents the successful journey of Kodes from political turmoil of the Cold War to international tennis fame, detailing the early days of darkness and family persecution in communist Czechoslovakia and the complexities of becoming a professional tennis player under a totalitarian regime. Entertaining anecdotes featuring Czech tennis legends Ivan Lendl and Martina Navratilova are also featured as well as the stories behind Kodes’ victories at Wimbledon and the French Open and his two runner-up finishes at the U.S. Open.

“I am very pleased that this book is now available in English so fans outside of the Czech Republic can learn about my story and some history of tennis in my country,” said Kodes. “I am happy to share stories of my triumphs and failures as well as stories about Martina Navratilova, Ivan Lendl and other Czech tennis greats.”

“JAN KODES: A JOURNEY TO GLORY FROM BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN” is available for $49.95 in bookstores and retail outlets across the United States and Canada. It is a deluxe glossy photo and text hard cover that fills 548 pages.

Kodes is considered the most under-rated tennis champion of the Open Era, reaching five major singles finals, winning the French Open in 1970 and 1971 and the men’s singles title at Wimbledon in 1973. He also reached the U.S. Open final in both 1971 and 1973, losing to Stan Smith and John Newcombe, respectively. Kodes played Davis Cup for Czechoslovakia for 15 years, leading his country to the final in 1975, where it lost to Sweden in Stockholm. His Davis Cup finale came in representing the team in 1980 when it won the championship over Italy in the final. Kodes has served as his country’s Davis Cup captain, president of the Czech Tennis Association, and tournament director of ATP Czech Open tournament.

“I believe that, in his time, Jan was one of the best players in the world,” said five-time Wimbledon champion Bjorn Borg. “He earned his place in tennis history as a great champion.”

Peter Kolar is a Czech writer, who has written for Basket, Sports Plus, and Xantypa. He is the author of several Czech books profiling the NBA, the Winter Olympics, and three-time world decathlon champion, Tomas Dvorak.

“JAN KODES: A JOURNEY TO GLORY FROM BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN” is published by New Chapter Press – also the publisher of The Roger Federer Story, Quest for Perfection by Rene Stauffer, The Bud Collins History of Tennis by Bud Collins, The Education of a Tennis Player by Rod Laver with Bud Collins, Acing Depression: A Tennis Champion’s Toughest Match, by Cliff Richey with Hilaire Richey Kallendorf, Tennis Made Easy by Kelly Gunterman, Boycott: Stolen Dreams of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games by Tom Caraccioli and Jerry Caraccioli, The Lennon Prophecy by Joe Niezgoda, Bone Appetit, Gourmet Cooking For Your Dog by Susan Anson, The Rules of Neighborhood Poker According to Hoyle by Stewart Wolpin, People’s Choice Cancun – Travel Survey Guidebook by Eric Rabinowitz and Weekend Warriors: The Men of Professional Lacrosse by Jack McDermott, among others. Founded in 1987, New Chapter Press is an independent publisher of books and part of the Independent Publishers Group. More information can be found at www.NewChapterMedia.com.

Cliff Richey To Continue Mental Health Crusade During 2010 Open

NEW YORK – Cliff Richey, the tennis standout who ranked as the No. 1 tennis player in the United States 40 years ago in 1970, will continue his mental health advocacy crusade in New York at the 2010 US Open with several speeches and appearances to raise awareness and help people overcome depression and de-stigmatize the illness.

Richey, along with his sister Nancy Richey, a member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, will headline a fund-raiser for the Riverdale Mental Health Association on Tuesday, September 7 at the Riverdale Yacht Club. Richey, a high-school dropout, will also speak at Columbia University’s Department of Psychiatry on Friday, September 10. He will also conduct a signing for his new book ACING DEPRESSION: A Tennis Champion’s Toughest Match on Monday, September 6 at 5 pm at the US Open Bookstore on site at the Billie Jean King USTA National Tennis Center.

In ACING DEPRESSION, Richey calls depression among adult males “the silent tragedy in our culture today” and details his life-long battle with the disease that afflicts approximately 121 million people around the world. Co-written with his oldest daughter, Hilaire Richey Kallendorf, ACING DEPRESSION ($19.95, New Chapter Press, www.CliffRicheyBook.com), is a first-hand account of the life and tennis career of Richey, providing readers with his real-life drama – on and off the tennis court. Richey’s depression is a constant theme, from his genetics and family history, to the tensions of his professional tennis career and family life, to his eventual diagnosis and steps to recover from his condition.

Jimmy Connors, the five-time U.S. Open champion and a friend of Richey, penned the Foreword for ACING DEPRESSION. Writes Connors, “What made Cliff Richey what he was on the tennis court has certainly carried over into this book. His story has taken a subject, depression—which has affected him personally—and put it out there for everyone to see. Depression has been a subject that no one really talks about. Few people even admit to having such a condition. But Cliff is not afraid to be bold and reveal what he has gone through and what it takes to get a handle on this disease…Just as Cliff played tennis, he is studying how depression works; what its weaknesses are; and what strategies you can use against it. His hope is that people who read his story can learn—learn about the disease and learn that people who suffer can have a better quality of life. Things can get better. There is hope.”

Richey and his sister Nancy, a former French and Australian singles champion, will hit tennis balls, provide instruction and speak at the fund-raiser for the Riverdale Mental Health Association. The event will be held from 5 pm to 7 pm at the Riverdale Yacht Club, 800 West 254th Street and Palisade Avenue in the Bronx. Tickets are available for $150 per person, $250 per couple and $50 per child and can be purchased by emailing alange@rmha.org or calling 718-796-5300 x106. Preceding the fundraiser, Richey will visit the RMHA offices to tour the facilities and speak with clinicians. For more information on the RMHA, go to www.rmha.org.

Richey was known as the original “Bad Boy” of tennis, before there was John McEnroe and Ilie Nastase. His 26-year career was highlighted by a 1970 season where he led the United States to the Davis Cup title, finished as the first-ever Grand Prix world points champion and won one of the most exciting matches in American tennis history that clinched the year-end No. 1 American ranking. However, his tantrums and boorish behavior simply served as a mask for his internal struggle with clinical depression. During his darkest days, Richey would place black trash bags over the windows of his house, stay in bed all day and cry. With the same determination that earned him the nick-name “The Bull,” Richey fought against his depression that was not diagnosed until just before his 50th birthday during a routine visit to the skin doctor. Since his happenstance diagnosis, Richey has steadily been taking anti-depressant drugs that has greatly improved his quality of life and moved him to become an advocate for mental health, speaking at numerous events and gatherings across the country.

“I have been given so many second chances in my life,” Richey says in the book. “The beautiful thing is that in recovery, almost everything in your life becomes a second chance. Hope is the foundation of our great country of America. Hope is such a driver of the normal human condition. The sum total of my awful disease was “loss of hope.” That’s the truly awesome thing about recovery: once you come back, your whole life after that feels like a second chance.”

The book has also received acclaim and endorsements in the mental health community.

Says Jackie Shannon, the Past President of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), “Real men do get depression—even champion athletes. Cliff’s story is an inspiration to all those who are battling mental illnesses and a wake-up call to the public.” Says Lynn Lasky Clark, President and CEO of Mental Health America of Texas, “This straight forward, honest and intensely personal account of Cliff Richey’s experiences with tennis and depression is truly inspirational. Cliff Richey approaches his recovery from depression with great passion and determination. He provides hope and understanding through this powerful memoir.” Say Lynn Rutland, the Executive Director of MHMR (Mental Health, Mental Retardation), “The Richey’s inspired a whole generation of kids to believe in themselves and strive for excellence. Cliff’s story gives people hope when life has dealt them darkness. The battle for the mind is one that Cliff will never lose through lack of effort as he offers insight into his own struggles and victories. His story will continue to make a difference for those suffering with depression.”

ACING DEPRESSION is published by New Chapter Press – also the publisher of The Roger Federer Story, Quest for Perfection by Rene Stauffer, The Bud Collins History of Tennis by Bud Collins, The Education of a Tennis Player by Rod Laver, Tennis Made Easy by Kelly Gunterman, Boycott: Stolen Dreams of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games by Tom Caraccioli and Jerry Caraccioli, The Lennon Prophecy by Joe Niezgoda, Bone Appetit, Gourmet Cooking For Your Dog by Susan Anson, The Rules of Neighborhood Poker According to Hoyle by Stewart Wolpin, People’s Choice Cancun – Travel Survey Guidebook by Eric Rabinowitz and Weekend Warriors: The Men of Professional Lacrosse by Jack McDermott, among others. Founded in 1987, New Chapter Press is an independent publisher of books and part of the Independent Publishers Group. More information can be found at www.NewChapterMedia.com.

USTA Announces Green Initiatives

FLUSHING, N.Y., September 1, 2010 – The USTA announced today a further expansion of its environmental initiatives, now in their third year, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, home of the US Open, which annually hosts more than 700,000 fans during the two weeks of the event.  Emmy-award winning actor Alec Baldwin once again joins the tennis facility’s namesake, Billie Jean King, as spokespeople for the USTA’s awareness campaign to encourage US Open fans and others to help preserve the environment.  New PSAs featuring Baldwin will be shown throughout the grounds.

“For the past two years, the US Open Green Initiatives have been among the most successful environmental endeavors of any sports property,” said Lucy S. Garvin, Chairman of the Board and President, USTA, and Chairman of the US Open.  “The continued expansion of the green initiatives will help keep the USTA, the US Open and tennis fans worldwide at the forefront of the global effort to preserve the environment.”

The USTA will continue to work with top environmental agency, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), as well as Billie Jean King’s GreenSlam and Eco Evolutions to develop ongoing initiatives to further reduce the US Open’s carbon footprint and overall environmental impact.

In addition to the new Alec Baldwin PSAs, new initiatives for 2010 will include site-wide composting on the grounds at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, and the employment of two area undergraduates as part of Billie Jean King’s GreenTernship program.

In 2007, Billie Jean King founded and launched GreenSlam, an environmental initiative for the sports industry aimed at inspiring sports venues, promoters and manufacturers to make positive environmental impacts. In 2009, GreenSlam launched its GreenTernship program, designed to involve youth with green job training and the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the eco-sports movement.  The US Open will employ two GreenTerns from New York University to assist with the Green Initiatives. For more information, go to www.greenslam.net.

Green Initiatives at the 2010 US Open

Fan Awareness

  • Alec Baldwin and Billie Jean King once again serve as spokespeople for the awareness campaign to promote environmental consciousness among US Open fans, players, vendors, partners and sponsors, and two new PSAs featuring Baldwin will air on the JumboTron/videoboards throughout the grounds.
  • 2010 US Open Green Initiatives are featured in the official US Open program.
  • USOpen.org will feature an interview with Billie Jean King about the GreenTernship program.
  • NRDC’s Simple Steps (environmental tips) will be featured in the Daily Drawsheet.

Recycling

  • A consumer waste recycling program for plastic and cans and an operational recycling program for cardboard and glass cover 100% of the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
  • Following the US Open, approximately 20,000 Wilson tennis ball cans are recycled.  The 60,000 Wilson tennis balls used during the US Open are reused for NTC programming and then donated to community/youth programs.

Energy Management

  • Constellation Energy, the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center’s electricity supplier, will supply Green-e Certified wind Renewable Energy Certificates to match the Center’s electricity consumption during the 2010 US Open.
  • IBM, which powers USOpen.org, will continue to utilize just six servers, down from 60 in 2008.  Their energy consumption has been reduced by 40% and their cooling demand reduced by 48%.

Transportation

  • Hybrid vehicles are 55-60% of the Mercedes-Benz player transportation fleet, up from 40% in 2009.
  • Each day during the two-week event, Esurance, the car insurance company, is distributing daily 125 MetroCards worth $4.50 to encourage the use of mass transit to and from the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.

Paper Procurement

  • The 2.4 million napkins used by US Open patrons in the general concession area during the tournament are comprised of 90% post-consumer waste, while Grey Goose napkins are comprised of 100% recycled content.
  • The Daily Drawsheet and US Open marketing material are printed on paper comprised of 30% post-consumer waste and printed by companies certified by the Forest Stewardship Council – guaranteeing environmentally-responsible forest management.
  • US Open tickets are printed on paper comprised of 30% post-consumer waste, and parking books, parking visors and coupon books are printed on paper comprised of 10-15% post-consumer waste.
  • 100% of paper towel dispensers have been replaced with motion-sensor dispensers and all paper towels are comprised of 40% post-consumer waste.

US Open Merchandise

  • The US Open collection will feature hats comprised of 50% post-consumer waste – each hat will contain the equivalent of two one-liter plastic bottles.
  • US Open merchandise stores will feature a souvenir-style shopping bag designed for multiple uses with a “recycle and reuse” message printed on the bottom.  In addition, a reusable tote bag will be available for $5.
  • A $10,000 donation from US Open merchandise proceeds will go to Unisphere, Inc., the non-profit organization that maintains and preserves Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

Food & Serviceware

  • Utensils, plates, cups, etc. are comprised of bio-based materials.
  • The Stonyfield Café is added to the Food Village and will feature a grab-and-go dining option serving healthy food, fast – options are all-natural and/or organic, and locally grown.

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The USTA is the national governing body for the sport of tennis in the U.S. and the leader in promoting and developing the growth of tennis at every level — from local communities to the highest level of the professional game.  A not-for-profit organization with 750,000 members, it invests 100% of its proceeds in growing the game. It owns and operates the US Open, the highest attended annual sporting event in the world, and launched the Olympus US Open Series linking 10 summer tournaments to the US Open. In addition, it owns the 90 Pro Circuit events throughout the U.S., is a minority owner and promotional partner of World TeamTennis, and selects the teams for the Davis Cup, Fed Cup, Olympic and Paralympic Games. The USTA philanthropic entity, USTA Serves, provides grants and scholarships and through tennis, helps underserved youth and people with disabilities to improve academics, build character and strive for excellence. For more information on the USTA, log on to usta.com.

The History of Grand Slams On Exhibit at the Open

FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – With all the live tennis going on at the US Open, some of the attractions at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center are often overlooked.

Yet, every fan needs to check out the US Open Gallery in Louis Armstrong Stadium.

Run by the International Tennis Hall of Fame, this year’s exhibit is entitled “The Grand Slam: Tennis’ Achievement” and showcases the winners of the four majors in a calendar year.

According to the press release, “These stories include singles (Don Budge, 1938; Maureen Connolly, 1953; Rod Laver 1962 and 1969; Margaret Court Smith, 1970; and Steffi Graf, 1988), doubles (Frank, Sedgman and Ken McGregor, 1951; Maria Bueno, 1960; Martina Navratilova and Pam Shriver, 1984; and Martina Hingis, 1998), mixed doubles (Margaret Smith and Ken Fletcher, 1963; Margaret Smith, 1965; Owen Davidson, 1967), and junior singles level (Stefan Edberg, 1983).

In the exhibit you will find an explanation of the four tournaments, various trophies and players’ equipment and also a short video.

All of this is put on by the International Tennis Hall of Fame, which is located in Newport, RI, a non profit organization dedicated to preserving the history of tennis. The location in Newport was where the 1881 US National Tennis Championships took place, which evolved into the US Open. For more information call 401-849-3990 or visit the website www.tennisfame.com.

A Roof Is Not Needed On Arthur Ashe

FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Here we are just sitting and waiting for the rain to stop at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Today, three matches need to take place and will concurrently when the weather gets better.

And with these delays come questions. Now that Wimbledon has a roof and Roland Garros has one coming in five years, should the US Open follow suit and cover Arthur Ashe with some sort of retractable covering?

Every time it rains this question will come up. But with the cost being about $100 million, the location of the stadium, the amount of time its in use, the answer should be no.

Back when the city built Shea Stadium in 1964, the original plans called for a roof to go over the big bowl and the outfield area to be enclosed. Unfortunately, when the Mets, Jets, and the city did a feasibility study it was found out that it would be impossible to cover Shea. The weight would force the stadium to collapse.

But Arthur Ashe was built in 1997, and is more is more of a stable structure. Yet, you have to wonder if the land it’s built upon that was part of the same garbage dump back in the day could handle the weight of a roof.

Even if it can, though, it’s still not worth it. The US Open occurs two weeks out of the year. For the other 50, the place is pretty much dormant, with the exception of the occasional event or two. To spend money on rain insurance for something that may happen once every five or so years is just foolish.

The funds would be better off spent to keep expanding the Tennis Center or use for other purposes that may have a year round purpose. For example, could the USTA build a tennis hall of fame somewhere on the grounds? How about putting the money into the eyesore that was on the New York Pavilion from the World’s Fair? This would be something that can be used year round, promoting the sport of tennis and can be enjoyed by fans from around the world.

If you want insurance, then play some of the matches at the indoor facility. Make sure they are up to the championship code. That way you can continue the Rafael Nadal match inside rather than hoping the Mother Nature is kind to the sport.

And if you want a location where a large crowd can watch an important match, one of the soon to be five arenas in the area should be available. Imaging playing at Madison Square Garden, Nassau Coliseum or even the new Brooklyn arena, if its built. Now, remember this is a last resort situation, but still better than shelling out millions for a roof that may not be able to be built.

Rain is unfortunate, but only occurs every few years. If the USTA wastes money on a roof for Arthur Ashe it’s their business, but it’s something that they don’t need, and should be pressured into it.