| By Long Island Tennis Magazine Staff
Photo credit: Anthony Pastecchi

The USTA has announced that country superstar Hunter Hayes, breakout duo MKTO, girl group McCLAIN, British pop rock band The Vamps, teen sensation Madison Beer and EDM prodigy DJ Salerno will team up with tennis icons Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal at the 19th Annual Arthur Ashe Kids Day, Presented by Hess, Saturday, Aug. 23 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y. from 9:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m. Singer and actress China Anne McClain (Sing Your Face Off, A.N.T. Farm) and Jeff Sutphen (Figure It Out, BrainSurge), will co-host the show, with a special guest appearance by popular fitness trainer and choreographer, Shaun T. Arthur Ashe Kids Day, Presented by Hess, will kick off the 2014 U.S. Open, Aug. 25-Sept. 8.

From 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., kids and their families can enjoy an exciting array of free tennis games, live music and attractions taking place throughout the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Inside Arthur Ashe Stadium from 1:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m., the live tennis and music show will feature fun exhibition matches and skills competitions with Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, as well as musical performances by Hunter Hayes, MKTO, McCLAIN, The Vamps and Madison Beer and Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day house DJ Salerno. Additional talent will be announced in the coming weeks. Arthur Ashe Kids Day will be broadcast nationally by CBS on Sunday, Aug. 24 from Noon-1:30 p.m.

“Not only is Arthur Ashe Kids Day, Presented by Hess a fantastic way to kick off the U.S. Open, but it’s also a great time to encourage youth to be active, play tennis and develop healthy habits,” said Gordon Smith, USTA executive director and chief operating officer. “This annual event continues to bring the entire family together for a fun-filled day of sports and entertainment.”

Proceeds from Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day benefit the USTA Foundation which helps fund the National Junior Tennis & Learning Network (NJTL), a nationwide group of more than 600 non-profit youth-development organizations that provide free or low-cost tennis, education and life-skills programming to more than 325,000 children each year, founded 45 years ago by Arthur Ashe, along with Charlie Pasarell and Sheridan Snyder.

Over the years, Arthur Ashe Kids Day has been a launching ground for many of music’s biggest acts, including Ariana Grande, Austin Mahone, Justin Bieber, Rihanna, The Wanted, Jonas Brothers, Demi Lovato, Carly Rae Jepsen, Cody Simpson, Sean Kingston, Britney Spears, Ne-Yo, Jessica Simpson, Hanson and Backstreet Boys.

The Grounds Festival offers a wide range of interactive activities and the opportunity for children of all ages to test their skills, hit with top tennis pros, win prizes and enjoy music:

►Hess Express Stage: The Grounds Festival’s free concert featuring up-and-coming musical talent including hip-hop phenoms The Bomb Digz, “Hip Pop” duo Kalin and Myles, New York’s Impact Rep and recent Billboard “Hot Shot Debut” Shawn Mendes. Additional acts to be confirmed.

YouthTennis.com (two courts): Tennis is sized right for kids! With shorter courts, smaller racquets and lower-bouncing balls, the focus is on the fun so kids enjoy the game right from the start.

Hess Express Obstacle Course: Test agility, balance, running and tennis skills on the engaging and challenging obstacle course.

Hess Target Time: Intermediate and advanced-level kids can test their skills hitting targets.

Xerox Beat the Pro: Challenge the best playing points against some of the top touring and teaching pros in the world.

PTR 10 & Under Tennis: Have some fun with PTR professionals and work on improving your beginning serve, rally and scoring skills.

USPTA 10 & Under Tennis: USPTA-certified teaching professionals host this court consisting of colorful hitting stations using a variety of teaching aids.

Nike Tennis: Tennis and skill activities on two courts featuring Nike-sponsored athletes.

Esurance Champions of the Court: Exciting doubles play for all levels. Which team will win Champions of the Court?

USTA Foundation Tennis Skills: Innovative, fun, tennis and fitness activities to develop the skills of beginning players of all ages.

Coca-Cola Get Fit and Play: Challenging tennis courses for varying skill levels focusing on agility, balance, coordination, speed and strength.

IBM Speedzone: Just like the pros, utilize IBM’s speed serve technology to test the power behind your shot.

The U.S. Open American Express Fan Experience: Step inside the U.S. Open American Express Fan Experience for even more tennis fun! The Fan Experience is located in the Chase Center near the East Gate.

Watch the Pros Practice: See tennis’s biggest stars up close as they prepare for the U.S. Open. Public practices are featured on Louis Armstrong Stadium, Grandstand and Court 17. Watch the video boards for schedules

From Nickelodeon: Live appearances by SpongeBob, Patrick, Dora and Diego!

Also: Autographs, juggling workshop, face painting, hair beading and braiding, storytelling, balloon artists, roving entertainers and more.