New Haven’s premier sporting event is less than two months away and on Wednesday, Connecticut Open officials made some major announcements.
Stadium Court was quiet on Wednesday, but by late August, fans will be flocking to New Haven to see some of the best tennis players in the world.
"We've been traveling 100mph for the past month. There is so much new this year, so much excitement,” Connecticut Open Tournament Director Anne Worcester said.
This year marks 20 years of women's tennis in New Haven. Worcester said Porche has signed on to be one of the more prominent sponsors.
"Germany said we want to test drive women's tennis in North America,” Worcester said. "They had to pick of all the United States tournaments, had to pick a tournament, and they chose the Connecticut Open."
After stepping up to the plate a few years ago to keep the tournament from leaving Connecticut, the state has continued to make improvements to the stadium. Last year it was the players’ lounge and this year there's a new media room, along with moving the tournament's offices to the stadium.
The Connecticut Convention Center will be the new food vendor for the tournament.
There are the big names headed to the Connecticut Open. Not only today's stars but legends are headed to the tennis tournament. John McEnroe, Mark Philippoussis, Michael Chang and James Blake are all expected to play in the Men's Legends Powershares Series event on Thursday and Friday
"It creates more than $10 million dollars in synergies in our local economy and so that makes it important,” New Haven Mayor Toni Harp said. “We are featured across the world on ESPN, so people understand what a great place this is to live, work, and play."
Organizers of the Connecticut Open and the city of New Haven, say it’s a week of world class tennis, but it’s so much more than that. It also impacts the community.
"It provides opportunities for our young people to learn about tennis, supports them in our school, offers opportunities for our not for profits to earn more money,” Harp said. “It does multiple things and we're really grateful that it's here."
"We have never looked at this as a tennis tournament,” Worcester said. “It’s a vehicle for doing good and for giving back to the community."
The tournament runs from Aug. 18 to 26. For more information on the Connecticut Open, click here.
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