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Mayor Bill de Blasio kicks off US Open

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As fireworks shot into the night sky and music rocked the stands, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio officially kicked off the festivities at the 2014 US Open in Queens on Monday.

Thousands of spectators flocked to the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Corona Park Monday night for the opening ceremony and first official match. Hundreds of people poured out of subway cars and Long Island Rail Road cars and were screened with enhanced security procedures for a glimpse at the action.

“The US Open is where it’s at,” de Blasio told the packed audience at the Arthur Ashe Stadium. “This is a tennis city and we’re proud to be.” He spoke next to former New York City Mayor David Dinkins on the court as tennis superstars John McEnroe and Martina Navratilova shot tennis balls into the stands and music rocked the stadium.

De Blasio said more than 700,000 people will visit the stadium in the next two weeks.