Originally Published by Dow.
Dow is celebrating the 31st year of the Dow Tennis Classic (DTC), a prestigious U.S. Tennis Association (USTA) Pro Circuit event that will be held at the Greater Midland Tennis Center from January 28 to February 3, 2019. The DTC is Michigan’s only professional tennis tournament and the largest and longest-running women’s event on the USTA Pro Circuit.
This year, the event is expected to draw more than 60 professional athletes from across the globe and thousands of visitors from across Michigan. Athletes will be competing for valuable WTA Tour Ranking points as well as prize money.
“Dow is proud to sponsor this elite event, which has grown into one of the region’s greatest traditions over the past three decades,” said Greg Bunker, Dow’s executive representative for the DTC and a member of the Greater Midland Tennis Center Board of Directors. “We are thrilled to have another opportunity to bring exceptional tennis talent to our community while also helping to inspire the next generation of players, and we are very appreciative of the support that we have received from the entire Great Lakes Bay Region.”
Positive Female Role Models Inspire Great Lakes Bay Region Youth
The week will include the Dow-sponsored “Pros to Schools” outreach program that sends tournament players to local schools to talk about their different cultures and what it takes to become a professional tennis player. The program is expected to reach more than 3,000 students with messages that stress the importance of health, wellness, living an active lifestyle and embracing the many diverse cultures that exist around the world.
“This dynamic outreach program enables area youth to learn life lessons related to hard work, competition and perseverance from these talented athletes,” said Bunker. “Studies have shown by the age of 14, girls drop out of sports twice as often as boys. These female athletes are role models to young girls, encouraging them to join in and remain in sports.”
New to the DTC This Year
This year’s tournament boasts several new features and guest appearances, including:
- Science of Sport displays will be set up at the DTC, demonstrating how Dow’s innovation, technological expertise and strategic partnerships are helping athletes perform better than ever. From creating elastomers that add resilience to athletic footwear, to developing resins used in golf ball coatings and artificial turf for playing fields, to improving aerodynamics in luge and car racing, Dow’s materials science expertise is providing sustainable and performance-enhancing solutions that are helping to transform the world of sport across the globe.
- The Ladies Professional Golf Association’s (LPGA) Suzann Pettersen, a Dow ambassador since 2008, will make a special appearance at the DTC in the afternoon on Saturday, February 2. Off the golf course, Pettersen is an ambassador for the charity Right to Play, which uses sports to educate and empower disadvantaged children. The two-time major winner is expected to return to Midland this July 15-20 to compete in the first-ever Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational at the Midland Country Club.
- The DTC is proud to welcome former Division I tennis player and current tennis coach Blair Henley to Midland as this year’s tournament emcee. Henley is a journalist, editor and on-camera host who has emceed the U.S. Open, BNP Paribas Open, the Miami Open and other events. She has also interviewed many legends of the game including Roger Federer, Venus Williams, Andre Agassi, Victoria Azarenka, Andy Roddick, Genie Bouchard, Martina Navratilova, Stan Wawrinka.