A forgotten stadium in Queens is bringing in big acts and turning up the music this summer after years of silence.
2014 will be the first year the West Side Tennis Club’s (WSTC) Stadium will have a full concert schedule. So far its already seen Zac Brown and four more acts are already scheduled (see below), with a contract for 12 shows over the next two years.
The stadium was an international icon when it started its music program in 1961. Jimi Hendrix, Simon and Garfunkel, The Beatles, Frank Sinatra, The Who, Diana Ross, and Bob Dylan were some of the performers who graced the stage.
However, sometime in the early 90s the music faded. The stadium became overgrown and dilapidated and lost its luster. Meanwhile the posh, members only tennis club kept on.
Last summer, 2013, Mumford & Sons played as a pilot concert for starting up the venue after 20 years of silence. Renovations had been done, but the logistics of entertaining 17,000 fans in a usually quiet neighborhood in Forest Hills Queens was still unclear.
That show was first come first serve, so people were showing up at six in the morning running amuck until the show started that night. For the most part it went well, but with big changes come big complaints and residence were not too happy about the drunken loiterers, pop-up merchandise stands outside their windows, funny smells, stadium lighting, and loud music into the night.
After a series of community meetings between the WSTC’s new president, the stadium’s promotor, and Forest Hills residents found some middle ground. This year everyone will be more prepared. The stadium will have 3,000-4,000 fewer tickets available, temporary bathrooms will be set up, the police will be oit, and seats are predestined to avoid long lines.
The stadium is at 1 Tennis Pl, Forest Hills, NY and its close to the E,F,M,R trains. The Long Island Railroad frequently stops in Forrest Hills and it’s in the middle LaGuardia and JFK.
This summer will be a little bit of music history in the making and definitely worth a listen. If you can’t get tickets, just find a grassy patch nearby; the whole neighborhood has good acoustics.
West Side Tennis Club Stadium Schedule 2014 (according to www.vividseats.com)
August 9th, Saturday, 630pm Modest Mouse and Brand New
August 19th, Tuesday, 7pm Drake and Lil Wayne
September 19th, Friday, 630pm, The Replacements
September 21st, Sunday, 6pm, Phil Lesh
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