Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Wake Forest Plans Tennis Facility Ahead of Tourney

Earlier today, Wake Forest announced plans to host an annual professional tennis tournament, beginning in August 2011. The Winston-Salem Open at Wake Forest University will be an American Tennis Professionals World Tour 250 series event that was previously held in New Haven, Conn. The tournament will be part of the Olympus US Open Series and will be the final ATP tournament prior to the US Open.

“It is an honor for Wake Forest to serve as the host of the Winston-Salem Open,” said President Nathan O. Hatch. “The international attention garnered by the tournament will allow us to showcase Wake Forest's unique character.”

To accommodate the tournament, a new tennis facility will be constructed off of Shorefair Drive, between BB&T Field and the Wake Forest Indoor Tennis Center. The facility will have 10 to 12 outdoor tennis courts, including a
stadium court which can seat at least 3,500 spectators. The facility will also be used by the Wake Forest tennis teams and may be used for concerts and other entertainment activities.

The new facility will impact the student parking lot at BB&T Field.  While this will change the look around the student lot, it presents new and exciting opportunities to further enhance the atmosphere of the student lot.

“The construction of the new tennis facility will allow tremendous programming possibilities for our student tailgating area,” said Ron Wellman, the director of athletics. “The student game-day experience is important to the landscape of Wake Forest football, and we look forward to engaging with students over the coming months to discuss the opportunities that this area can now bring, like concerts, tailgate space and other activities.”

Following the holiday break, the athletic department will form a committee of student leaders to discuss tailgating and the game-day experience. Interested students are encouraged to e-mail Mike Odom in the athletic
department at odomms@wfu.edu.

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