SCARSDALE, N.Y. Professional tennis player James Blake headlined a charity function for the Westchester Children's Museum on Monday morning at the Quaker Ridge Golf Club.
Blake, who was born in Yonkers, helped raise money for the Westchester Children's Museum, which recently acquired a 10-year lease at a bath house in Rye Playland. The pro led a tennis clinic in which enthusiastic players had the chance to team up with and rally against Blake in friendly competition.
Blake, who is active in community events, is still satisfied from seeing the smiles on people's faces.
"You hope you're just making their day," Blake said. "If you start taking it for granted, you've been doing it too long."
Andrea Tucker, a Scarsdale resident who co-chaired Monday's event, marveled at how the museum grew from a grassroots effort into its current form. She praised Blake for his generosity and pointed to the interaction that people had with the professional.
"It's amazing to have an American tennis pro like James Blake come out and support the museum," Tucker said. "It's a once in a lifetime opportunity to get on court and hit with an international tennis star. He really is a hometown hero in every sense of the word."
Tracy Kay, executive director of the Westchester Children's Museum, said the lease will lead to more hands-on outreach programs to children in the county. A separate project to complete structural repairs on the bath house will soon end and the museum will then step in and begin infrastructure work.
He said the museum will develop a sense of wonder for the children, and hopefully the adults, that visit.
"It depends on if you've grown up or not," Kay said. "And I hope no one has."
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