Tennis gets Presidential seal of approval...video with the Bryan brothers & Sam Querry
President Obama had an impromptu Let's Move! meet-and-greet at the White House on Tuesday, when he popped in to visit the kids and world-class instructors participating in a tennis clinic on the South Lawn. It wasn't part of his regular schedule, but the moment wound up being the photo of the day on the White House blog on Wednesday, August 4th, his birthday (above).
The US Tennis Association ran Tuesday's tennis clinic, as part of First Lady Michelle Obama's summer South Lawn Series, and it was led by the identical twin champion doubles Bryan brothers--Bob and Mike--and singles champ Sam Querry.
The White House released a special video of the event on August 11, showing President Obama in action with the kids and tennis stars:
"These guys are the best doubles players in the world," President Obama said as he was introduced to the Bryan brothers. "I was just reading about them in Sports Illustrated."
The President surprised and thrilled everyone when he stopped by, in this video from the Bryan brothers:
“It was very exciting to meet him. He thanked us for coming out and hitting with the kids. It was an honor to meet him and pretty exciting that he just popped in like that," Querry told Tennis X about the presidential appearance. “He showed up out of the blue.”
The clinic was originally scheduled for earlier this month, when Mrs. Obama, joined by tennis legends Serena Williams and Billie Jean King, was going to host the event herself.
But a huge DC thunderstorm forced cancellation. A spokeswoman for the East Wing said that although Mrs. Obama couldn't attend Tuesday's clinic, the White House wanted to hold it anyway. Tennis has become Mrs. Obama's favorite sport since becoming First Lady, she's said; the White House's full-size tennis court is adjacent to the Kitchen Garden on the South Lawn, hidden by shrubbery. The President's got game, too.
"He beats me quite often," Mrs. Obama told Jay Leno last October, when she appeared via satellite link on The Jay Leno Show. "That gets to be pretty annoying."
Mrs. Obama also tells Ladies' Home Journal, in her September 2010 cover story, that daughters Sasha and Malia play tennis too, because she's required them to master a sport that's not their favorite.
USTA installed special QuickStart courts sized for kids ten and under on the South Lawn, and about 100 DC kids attended. The Bryan Brothers tweeted the photo of themselves and Querry with the President, above, with "Back from a morning at the White House. Hit balls with kids on the South Lawn and hung out with the President." They're @bryanbros on Twitter.
Related: When Mrs. Obama launched the revamped President's Council on Fitness, Nutrition and Sports in June, the President was supposed to join her for his first-ever official appearance at a Let's Move! event, but he was "tied up" at the White House relieving Gen. Stanley McChrystal of his command. Chef Dan Barber is the only chef among the council members, and he joins other notable chefs as an Obama admin policy wonk.
*Photos: Top by Pete Souza/White House; second from @Bryanbros. White House video.