Youth tennis players travel to New York | Sept 2019
Three young student-athletes from Ambos Nogales recently traveled to New York City to participate in the national Arthur Ashe Kids Day celebration as part of the lead-up to the U.S. Open professional tennis tournament.
Marilu Portillo, 13, and Pamela Carbajal, 11, both of Nogales, Ariz., and Tyrone Alberto Cortez Lecona, 13, of Nogales, Sonora, made the trip as part of the Border Youth Tennis Exchange (BYTE), an after-school youth development program that offers free tennis and academic instruction to children at sites on both sides of the border.
2019 US Open, Arthur Ashe Kids Day | Aug 2019
A delegation of three BYTE student-athletes were selected by their instructors and respective city Mayors to attend the 2019 US Open kick-off celebrations. Each was chosen as MVP from their respective BYTE cohorts, recognizing their dedication to the program and discipline in their pursuit of tennis. During the trip the group were invited guests in the USTA Presidents’ Suite in Arthur Ashe Stadium. They also toured the city, taking in sights such as the Statue of Liberty, the 9/11 Memorial, and the Blue Man Group off-broadway show.
Spring Showcase | May 2019
BYTE celebrated the end of its 2019 Spring programming, including the first full cycle of classes at Anza Park, its new home in Nogales Arizona. Kids and families watched their digital stories, as well as those from their friends across the line.
University of Arizona Campus Kids Day | Apr 2019
For the third year in a row BYTE brought its student-athletes from both sides of the border to Tucson to take part in a tennis festival at the University of Arizona. BYTE coordinated with Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection, and the Port Authority to secure thirty-three 1-day humanitarian paroles for children and families that did not have visas to cross the border. In total over 100 people participated, including student-athletes from each of BYTE’s five cohorts. While in Tucson, the BYTE team watched an NCAA Mens’ tennis match, played in a junior tennis festival on the UA courts, and visited the campus art museum and photography studio.
BYTE Rally for Border Youth | Dec 2018
BYTE’s fall programming centered around guiding its student-athletes on each side through the design, construction, and painting of 10’x10’ custom tennis backboards. Each BYTE cohort built a backboard and worked with professional local artists to paint a mural that represents their experience living in a border community as well as the impact of being a part of a binational organization. BYTE then celebrated the culmination of the mural project by hosting a public tennis & art festival in the street at the US/Mexico border wall. The Rally for Border Youth festival was attended by the Mayors from both sides of the border as well as the US Consul General to Nogales Sonora. Two-hundred and fifty people enjoyed playing tennis as well as participating in various art projects.