FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - Sports tourism is vamping up in the Pee Dee.
In just about a month a big tennis open is making a stop in the city of Florence.
Florence is one of the smallest stops on the United States Tennis Association Pro Circuit.
The reason an event of this magnitude happens in Florence is because the city has 34 hard courts for practicing, warming up and playing matches.
Organizers said the Dr. Eddie Floyd Florence Tennis Center, just off of North Cashua Drive are some of the best in the state.
It's that massive tennis area that is providing opportunities for our area to host opens much like the McLeod for health Florence Open.
Keep in mind this is a nine day tournament that brings people from all over the place to contribute to Florence's economy, but the event is also helping to make Florence a place where bigger tennis opens can take place.
"What it does is it puts on the tennis map and makes us part of the USDA big times tennis and it gives us a lot of credibility when we bid for those tournaments that will bring us a lot of people and a lot of tourism dollars," Paul Pittman, Committee Chair said.
The games have been hosted in Florence for the past five years.
At that open you'll be able to catch 64-draw qualifying round, a 32-draw main round and a pro-am event.
The folks competing will be facing off for higher rankings and also $25,000.
This is a nine day event with single and doubles finals scheduled for the 22nd and 23rd of October
On the 23rd you'll be able to check out live music, a wine and cheese tasting and also introductory tennis levels for adults.
This year's open is sponsored by McLeod and all proceeds will go to Susan G Komen for the cure.
"It's going to be great tennis all the way through we do singles and doubles. I don't know if you follow tennis that closely or not, but we have had girls who have played here who have done very well in the grand slams and some of the other big tournaments," Pittman said
The date of the open are October 16-23.