Free, Family-Friendly Event Continues to Grow
  | By New York Tennis Magazine Staff
Photo credit: Nicole Guglielmo

United Sports Publications (USP), publisher of New York Tennis Magazine, Long Island Tennis Magazine and various multimedia tennis properties serving the New York metropolitan area, has announced that this Sunday, the largest free grassroots tennis ever held in New York will return to Flushing Meadows, N.Y., the Second Annual New York Tennis Expo. Set for 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, N.Y., this free event has something to offer for the entire family, and continues to grow and evolve as participation grows and attendance is expected to surpass the 3,000 mark as temperatures are expected to be in the upper 70s with sunny skies in the forecast.

Just added to the mix days ago is talk show host, news anchor and political analyst Sean Hannity who will serve as emcee and moderator for the panel discussion on Speaker Session #1: The Road to College Scholarships. Mr. Hannity will be joined by a number of the area’s greatest tennis talents and coaches for this session and the second Speaker Session, “Taking Your Game to the Next Level,” which will feature a special Q&A forum with World Renown Tennis Coach Nick Bollettieri.” Other speakers slated to appear include Jay Harris, general manager of Sportime Roslyn; Steven Kaplan, owner of Bethpage Park Tennis Center; Lawrence Kleger, director of the John McEnroe Tennis Academy; Whitney Kraft, director of tennis at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and director of player operations for the U.S. Open; Xavier Luna, director of junior tennis for the Advantage All-City Junior Tennis Programs; Sam Miller, founder of ProgressiveWellnessLLC; Lonnie Mitchel, head men’s and women’s tennis coach at SUNY Oneonta; Eric Rebhuhn, head men's tennis coach for St. John’s University; and former Queens College Coach Chris Tasso.

This year, tennis enthusiasts and their families can expect to enjoy an expansive “Activity Zone,” complete with indoor on-court play opportunities and games including the Beat the College Player Challenge, presented by the St. John’s University Men’s Tennis Team; the Speed Serve Booth/Dartfish Station, presented by Sportime/John McEnroe Tennis Academy; the 10 & Under Tennis demonstration, presented by IMG Academy and featuring Nick Bollettieri; and the Hit for Prizes Court, presented by Holabird Sports, Boast and Bolt. Back again this year is the Parent-Child Play Deck where parents and children will get to play together on two 60' sport courts, and three 36' sport courts set up for open play outside on top of the deck with a unique view of the famed Arthur Ashe Stadium.

New to the Expo this year will be the Inflatable Hockey Shoot-Out, presented by the New York Islanders and the Ice Tour Crew, including the NY Islander Ice Girls, and the Carnival Area, featuring standard carnival booth games, along with face painting, balloon animals, glitter tattoos and two courts of mini-tennis. DJ Curtis McCalla of Sportime will keep everyone entertained with great music and energy throughout the day. Registration for tours of Arthur Ashe Stadium Court and the U.S. Open locker room area will also be available for small fee. Throughout the event, there will be prizes, raffles and giveaways, including a two-night stay at Sea Colony Resort in Delaware, tickets to the 2014 U.S. Open, tickets to “Party With The Pros,” rackets from top manufacturers, and much more.

For those interested in the best tennis products and services, the expansive “Exhibitor Zone” will feature companies and organizations ranging from teaching aids and technology products, to apparel companies, manufacturers, tennis travel destinations, teaching organizations and virtually everything in between.

In partnership with the Special Olympics of New York, the Second Annual New York Tennis Expo will play host to the Unified Tennis Games Tournament, a friendly round-robin event that’s part of a broader mentorship and practice program pairing area high school varsity and tournament players with intellectually-challenged athletes.

Also new this year is an on-site broadcast plaza where New York Tennis Magazine and Long Island Tennis Magazine will create official Expo editorial content, including reports from the show floor, video interviews with speakers and exhibitors, as well as segments for the first-ever Tennis Talk New York radio show, the newest media component in USP’s platform, intended to serve both consumers and business partners.

For free pre-registration to the 2014 New York Tennis Expo, log on to http://www.2014nytennisexpo.eventbrite.com.