By Lesley Van Arsdall

The Philadelphia Freedoms kicked off their season at home last night against the Washington Kastles and Venus Willams.

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I got to talk to Venus and was amazed by how down to Earth she was. First of all, she played a match the night before, then had to hold a clinic for kids (and adults), then played again against the Freedoms, before finally hoping on a plane back home.

I’m sure the last thing she wanted to do was hang out and be interview by me… but you would never know it by her cheerful demeanor.
Here are a few things that surprised me: She is in amazing shape, yet claims she is a sugar addict (She blames her mom for eating Milky Way bars during her entire pregnancy). She is a fashion designer, but claims she had no sense of style growing up. Finally, when she plays against her sister, Serena, in tournaments she doesn’t see her as a ‘sister’ just another opponent and she plays to win. I still can’t imagine it is an easy thing to do. And who are her parents rooting for anyway???

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But what impressed me the most was how great she was to all the kids and fans who came out to see her. She talked to EVERYONE, she is truly what a role model should be.

She made their day… and mine.

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