ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF)– If you like something different how about a night of boxing outdoors in downtown Rockford? It’s going to happen in a few weeks.
Most of the boxing action in downtown Rockford happens inside the Patriots Boxing Club on First Avenue. That’s where club director/instructor Jimmy Goodman works out his young boxers. But come August 13th, the action will happen outside here at the Rockford City Market Pavilion in an event being called the Rockford Boxing Classic.
The club’s main ring will be moved there, and 12 to 15 fights will be held.
“Underneath the City Market pavilion it’s going to be an outstanding venue,” said Goodman. “People are going to come in and have a good time and see some boxing.”
Some of the club’s top fighters will step into the ring along with other fighters from around the Midwest. The club has partnered with Plus Seven Company to put on the event.
“It’s been in the works for a few years,” said Plus Seven Company Founder Nick Povalitis. “Jimmy and I kind of go way back from my time at the tourism agency, and we’ve long kicked around ideas about outdoor boxing, and it kind of came to fruition this year.”
To spice things up, a couple fights will feature men and women from the Rockford Police Department taking on two local firefighters. Cory Magnuson, who has a boxing background, has agreed to compete for the police department.
“I feel like we’ve always got a rivalry with the fire department. I guess it’s just one more thing we’ll be able to take a win in,” said Magnuson.
“It’s not a grudge match. It’s more of a healthy rivalry if you will,” said Rockford Fire Department Chief of Operations Tim O’Keefe. “We’ve got hockey games. We do football games. This just adds to it I guess.”
The Rockford Boxing Classic will be a showcase for our youth boxers, and also a fundraiser for the Patriots’ Boxing Club. Several sponsors have already been lined up. Ringside tables that will seat eight people can be reserved for $250, but spectators can also watch for free simply by bringing a lawn chair. There will be music with a live DJ, plus food and beverages can be purchased.
“We want it to end up being one of our main fundraisers,” said Goodman. This is almost like a trial run this year for our annual event.”
Povalitis thinks the event could be a big hit. “Another free community event in downtown Rockford, which is where we all should be at anyways celebrating Summertime. It’s going to be a great event.”
Again the Rockford Boxing Classic will Saturday evening, August 13th. Gates will open at 5 p.m. at City Market. The youth bouts will begin at 6 p.m. followed by police and fire department bouts at 8 p.m. For more information or to purchase a ringside table go to www.RockfordBoxingClassic.com and follow the Rockford Patriots Boxing Club Facebook page.