MASON, OH (FOX19) - Monday marked the first evening session at the Western and Southern Tennis Tournament at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason.
The tournament has thrilled fans for 114 years in greater Cincinnati. "It's wonderful. We love it. It's our first time here. It's been a great experience," said Maureen Helmer who is visiting with her family from Michigan.
Over the nine days of competition, 200,000 people will watch the best players in the world. "This is a great family event because any given day there are eight courts where there are matches going on," said tournament marketing director, Will Sikes.
Everywhere you look around the complex, you see the younger generation taking it all in, perhaps even dreaming the one day they too may become the sports next superstar. "I want to like play tennis like this and I want to be, like, famous," said 12-year-old Sara Meek of Anderson Township. Her friend, 11-year-old, Jessie Pierce said, "I just want to get autographs by some of the bigger players and I want to go out and watch them hit. I just like to see how fast they hit."
"The best is when you see the young kid meeting the star for the first time and getting the autograph," said Sikes. "They're running around with giant tennis balls with 10, 15 autographs on it and you know you can really see them seeing themselves out there in the future."