5 Insider Tips for Making the Most of the U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships

Posted by Holly Whitfield | February 7th 2013 83 18

The U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championship is coming back to the Racquet Club February 16th – 24th. Before you put on your tennis whites, check out these five insider tips for making the most of your trip to the tournament. Then, enter our contest to win tickets and tournament gear.

U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships

1. Get a Pronto Pup, even though it's winter.

Of course they do. It's a sporting event, it's in Memphis; one would assume that there are Pronto Pups. But really – how often do you get to eat this most heavenly version of corn dog in the winter? Order a foot long (because the 6 inch ones are for amateurs), slather it in mustard and eat it with one hand while you hold a beer in the other.

2. Get player photos and autographs.

Because the Racquet Club is more intimate than other venues and the players don't use any secret tunnels to get around, it's easy to see the big deal athletes up close. Your best bet: wait outside of the Championship Hall 15 to 20 minutes before the start of the match to snap pictures and be generally encouraging. If you're after autographs, repeat the process at the end of the match. Just don't be that guy who's bothering the players as they're trying to get ready to play.

3. Eat in the Players' Club.

If you're looking accidentally-on-purpose run into your favorite athlete without braving the autograph line, go to the Players' Club. During the tournament, the Racquet Club ballroom – a.k.a. the Players' Club – is turned into dining hall where players, coaches and fans can eat together before the evening matches. It's open daily from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

4. Find a place to park.

Since the Racquet Club is located in the middle of the city, parking can be a little tough. You could park on Sanderlin, but the spots go quickly. You could support the Boy Scouts by parking in one of the lots that they manage near the Paradiso and Clark Tower. Or, skip the crowds and park at St. Louis School on White Station. There's a shuttle that runs from the school to the tournament beginning at 5 p.m., but it's an easy (and safe) walk if you don't want to wait.

5. After the tournament, it's the after party.

Don't leave right after the matches are over. There are nighty after parties with live music, snacks, and games in the Players' Club and pub. One of those games is (fittingly) table tennis. You can sign up to play ping-pong against the world class real tennis pros that play every year. On Tuesday night (Feb. 19), doubles team the Bryan Brothers are putting down their racquets and picking up guitars for a concert.

6. Skip paying for tickets by entering our contest.

The Racquet Club and I are giving away two tickets to the session of your choice and some tournament swag (think posters, t-shirts and stickers). To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post by 12 p.m. Monday, Feb. 11. Be sure to provide your email address (which won't be given out to anyone) so that I can get hold of you if you win.

***We have a winner! Congrats to Dory B., and thanks to everyone who entered.***

For more information about the tournament and the players and advance tickets go here.

Author: Holly Whitfield

I write about what’s going on with Memphis music, food, arts, events, sports, people, and culture. Memphians love Elvis and barbeque with a passion that must be seen to be believed, but there is so much more to this place.

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  1. Leah says:

    This tournament is the most wonderful time of the year! I <3 tennis in Memphis!

  2. Gal F. says:

    I want in!

  3. JR Kamra says:

    Fantastic! I didn't know all the extra stuff went on at the tournament. Will have to check it out this year. 

  4. Whitney says:

    Will be taking your #2 in action: Meet Milos Raonic.

  5. C. Scott Johnson says:

    Please enter me for the free tickets. 

  6. jamey yoo says:

    cannot wait. i also would add go during qualifying. tickets are cheap, get to see all kinds of tennis! 

  7. Nepali Y says:

    I would love tickets!

  8. Nate says:

    FREE? Yes please!

  9. Mark Lessard says:

    I'll be driving over 700 miles to catch some of the tournament in Memphis & would love to win tickets & some tournament swag!

  10. Jeret Johnson says:

    Two tickets would be awesome!  This will be my first time in Memphis!

  11. Charles says:

    Tennis is my fave.

    Pronto Pups are the bomb.com


  12. Laura says:

    Loving me some high caliber tennis – evening sessions preferred!

  13. Mark Lessard says:

    I'll be driving over 700 miles to attend the tournament in Memphis & would love to win some tickets!

  14. Keith says:

    I definitely want in on free tennis tournament action.

  15. Tina says:

    Would love to make the drive down from Nashville!

  16. James Walker says:

    Free tickets would be sick, yo!

  17. Amanda W says:

    You sold me at table tennis with the pros. I want a chance. 

  18. Brittany says:

    This sounds like it could be a lot of fun!

  19. Allison says:

    I would love to win tickets!

  20. Larry says:

    I'm looking forward to being in Memphis for the 10th year in a row. Always an awesome event!

  21. Lisa Busby says:

    Boy Scout parking is great if you don't have a parking pass for the RC lot. I love this tournament and don't have tickets…yet!

  22. Justin Ales says:

    My family loves this tournament.  This year I get to bring my little girl and her older brother. We will have a great time. 

  23. marilyn kreps says:

    It's February.  Happy happy happy!!  Would love to win.

  24. April Scott says:

    Tennis in Memphis.  I am in!

  25. April Scott says:

    Tennis in Memphis?  Count me in.

  26. Lauri says:

    I look forward to attending the tennis tournament in Memphis! Great atmosphere, great food and definitely great tennis = great time!!!

  27. LauraB says:

    Would love to win some tickets

  28. Ann says:

    Would be amazing to see this!

  29. Katie says:

    This tournament has always seemed like a secret, closed society. Thanks for the inside info! Sounds like fun- and SO Memphis. 

  30. Richard says:

    Sign me up please!!

  31. Jerry Madding says:

    can't wait

  32. Angie Ford says:

    I love your blog and read it religiously to stay informed about things to do in the bluff city. I would love to win your tickets since I am a lifetime local that's never been. Thanks for keeping us 'in the know'. 

  33. Dana Younh says:

    My husband’s never been to the tournament. Would be a great Valentine’s gift if we win!!

  34. Ann says:

    I would love to when some tickets.  My mom and I try to go to the tournament every year.

  35. Alysanne Crymes says:

    Please, oh please, I want the goodies!

  36. Tracy says:

    My husband and I are Memphis newbies, and we have trying to experience all the wonderful events that Memphis has to offer.  We are definitely in for this tournament! Sounds like a good time.

  37. Laura says:

    Would love to win some tickets!  I've attended in the past but can only go there one night on discounted tickets. One of the highlights of the year to see these awesome players play!!  Thank you for this opportunity!

  38. J Stewart says:

    The best sports event in Memphis!

  39. J Stewart says:

    This is the best sports event in Memphis!

  40. Renee W says:

    Can't wait. Especially excited to see some twins action this year. LOVE the Bryan Brothers. 

  41. Roy Cochran says:

    Love the Pronto Pups!

  42. Other things to know: Champions Exhibition on Monday Night, Bryan Brothers Concert benefiting St. Jude on Tuesday Night, Ladies Day Luncheon on Wednesday, Bourbon & BBQ on Thursday Night and Sunday Jazz Brunch. Check out the website for more details and tickets!

  43. Dory B says:

    Count me in! Thanks 

  44. Kerry says:

    Can't wait for the tournament!

  45. Amy says:

    Love to go!

  46. Jenny says:

    Love your blog and the tennis tournament! Haven't been able to go in years. Would love to get to go this year!

  47. The tennis tournament is always a great winter to-do in Memphis!  Love it!

  48. Santosh says:

    Thanks for the tips. I will be visiting Memphis for the first time and looking forward to it. 

  49. Nick says:

    My father and I are making our 8th annual trip  to Memphis from St. Louis for the tournament.  Makes February tolerable.  Memphis is a great and hospitable city. See you there!

  50. Jay says:

    Have never been to the tournament.  I have only been in Memphis 10 yrs. Interesting for sure

  51. Miki says:

    Definitely want to see big serving Isner and Raonic.

  52. chris hill says:


    Another great tip… volunteer to help with the tournament for a free pass to see all the tennis action when you aren't volunteering.

  53. kristen says:

    I'd love to take my daughters… they will love it!

  54. CH says:

    Tennis anyone?

  55. Jason says:

    Looking forward to seeing my favorite player John Isner (From The University of Georgia) play in the tournament.  He's #14 in the world right now!  Go John!!!!

  56. Lindsey says:

    I look forward to this tournament every year! Very excited to see Isner play. Thanks Kerry for all you do to keep us fellow Memphians "in the know" of all this city has to offer! 

  57. Lindsey says:

    I look forward to this tournament every year! Very excited to see Isner play. Thanks for all you do Kerry to keep us fellow Memphians in the know of all this city has to offer!

  58. Lindsey says:

    I've been twice and can't wait to make a return this year with a first-timer.

  59. Brentley McKinney says:

    Can't wait to see pro tennis up close!  Memphis is the best for feeling like you are in the action.  My son is 6'4" and looks up to Isner (more ways than one) and he can't wait to get picture and autograph.

  60. Ka says:

    I love the tournament. So fun!

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