A family guide to the U.S. Open.

By Cristian Nuñez

A Fan-mily guide to the U.S. Open.

Hello I am Cristian Nunez, AKA The Squash Pod U.S.A. Welcome to my little family guide to the U.S Open. Or in my case a FAN-MILY guide.

I introduced squash to my family very early. It started in Dublin, Ireland. Every time my wife would ask me to get the kids out the house, I would drive 5 minutes and let the kids run around the courts in my club.

Now living in New Jersey, I definitely have to drive longer to access a court but there are other perks, like access to top squash events as it was the US Open early this month.

Drexel University U.S Open

Being the obsessed squash fan that I am, I managed to convince my wife and kids to make a family visit. The venue was brilliant, Drexel University in Philadelphia, you can go in and out and you are in the middle of a park. There were plenty of places to get food and parking was 10 USD for the whole day.

My two boys, 8 and 6, were really excited. My 3 year-old girl wanted to see “her” girls play. Even with general admission tickets we were so close to the glass court and players, that we were able to experience a level of intimacy that is often so rare in other sports.

The Games

It was a full day of games. If I was alone I would have been there all day, but we managed to watch 3 games and that was plenty for the kids.

In every game the kids pledged some allegiances, cheered, gave their decision on lets and made some noise.

The Cherry On The Cake.

The cherry of the cake was when we had the chance to meet Abdulla Altamimi and Tarek Momem at the end of their match. After playing 60 odd minutes in a hell of a game, they both took the time to take pictures, sign autographs and talk to us.  That was really special and definitely fuels the interest of kids and grown-ups.  The first 2 things my kids ask when we got home were:

    1. Could we bring the autographs to school to show our friends?
    2. Could we go and play squash in the basement?

Next stop for us is ToC in Grand Central Terminal. Things that I would do next time:

    • the kids fed – We took a lunch break but I underestimated how hungry kids get in one hour.
    • Bring bottles of water. That worked really well.
    • Find out when is the children’s day. We miss it in the U.S. Open but these big tournaments have a day when organizers arrange for the players to sing posters and talk to the kids.

Show the kids the draw of tournament before you go. My kids kept asking over and over to the see the draw and results.

If you have other tips or have survived a family trip to a tournament we would love to hear about it.

Which tournaments are family friendly and what makes them that way?