Mumford & Sons Playing First Concert at West Side Tennis Club in Decades

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska on June 24, 2013 4:11pm 

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 The concert will take place at the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium.
Mumford & Sons to Play in Forest Hills in August
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QUEENS — The British Invasion is coming to Forest Hills.

The famed, but aging West Side Tennis Club, which has hosted some of the biggest names in rock and roll royalty including The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Rolling Stones and Frank Sinatra, will transform itself into a music stage again this summer for the first time in decades.

On Aug. 28, Mumford & Sons, along with two other British bands, will drum up a racket at the club, with Bear's Den and The Vaccines opening, said Bob Ingersole, the club's director.

Doors will open at 5 p.m. and the concert — the first in a series of several over the next few years — will begin at 6:15 p.m.

Concerts at the stadium were halted in the 1980s, after residents protested against them.

Hoping to avoid problems like noise and crowds, the tennis club said it will use the stadium's Burns Street entrance, which is further from residential buildings than the main entrance on Tennis Place.

The concert will also end by 10 p.m., Ingersole said.

Frank Gulluscio, district manager at Community Board 6, said the tennis club's representatives have met with the board members as well as with local elected officials and the 112th Precinct. The concert will be held "on private property and it's been done before," Gulluscio said. He also said the club did not request any street closings on the day of the concert.

"They've been very cooperative," Gulluscio added.

The August event is the only concert planned for this summer. But it will be the first in a series of events planned at the stadium over the next three years, six per each summer season, as first reported by the New York Times.

The events may include concerts as well as performances like "Shakespeare in the Park," Ingersole said.

The stadium, which opened in 1923, is being renovated for the event, including getting new seats, Ingersole said.

But the aging structure requires further renovations and the club is hoping to pay for the work with money from the events.

"We are looking to put money back into the stadium," Ingersole said.

General admission for the concert will be $70 and the organizers hope to fill the stadium which has a capacity of 17,000 people.

To purchase tickets, fans have to register for the chance to get an invitation. More details can be found here.

The concert is also part of the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the club in Forest Hills. The club was originally founded in 1892 in Manhattan.

The U.S. Open was held in Forest Hills until 1978, before moving to the National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.

The centenary celebration will also include a gala on June 29, a carnival for families on June 30 and a new tournament, the New York Open, which will be aimed at both pros and amateurs from the city and will be held for the first time between July 4-7.

The deadline for entering that tournament has been extended until June 27, Ingersole said.

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