LAVER CUP Press Release, September 18, 2018
As part of the mission to bring elite tennis back to the city of Chicago and inspire the next generation of young players, the Laver Cup has partnered with the United States Tennis Association to resurface four public tennis courts at Garfield Park.
The refurbished courts will provide increased opportunities for kids and adults to get involved in tennis and will form part of the legacy of the Laver Cup in the city for many years to come.
Mayor of Chicago Rahm Emanuel joined Laver Cup Managing Director Steve Zacks, former USTA President and Chicago native Alan Schwartz, Chicago Park District Chief Programming Officer Alonzo Williams and community members Freddie Chapman and Tyron Mason, among other city dignitaries and local children at the official unveiling of the tennis courts today.
“Part of the mission of bringing world-class tennis back to Chicago was to give back to the community and inspire the next generation of players,” Zacks said.
“You have heritage here in Garfield Park which is rich. Kids now have a beautiful manicured court to learn the game,” Schwartz added.
“The tradition of the USTA that I started under my administration was to make a legacy gift to any city where we had an international event. That tradition I’m delighted to see be carried on here.
“I look forward to it being used for generations to come and re-establishing Garfield’s pre-eminence in the Chicago Park District.”
“Garfield Park has rich history in the city of Chicago. It’s one of the founding parts of the city,” Mayor Emanuel said.
“Whether it’s on a court or the classroom we want to ensure we are investing in our kids.
“Garfield Park is participating in that effort and receiving an investment. I want to thank you for the contribution.”
Garfield Park, originally opened in 1874, is now a 184-acre park that anchors the East Garfield neighborhood. The park hosts softball, baseball, soccer, in-line skating and many other activities, including tennis.
Among the people introduced to tennis at Garfield Park was USTA Chairman of the Board and President Katrina Adams. An accomplished professional player, Adams not only played on the original courts in the park but has conducted youth tennis clinics on the four courts that will now be resurfaced.
The park is in close proximity to many schools, and the refurbished courts will help stimulate additional tennis programming and physical fitness for children in the community. The courts are up to US Open standards with complete court repair, resurfacing and stencilling.