Boxing card at fairgrounds draws 600“Lights Out in Barnum” was an unqualified success. The first boxing card in memory held at the Carlton County Fairgrounds resulted in a crowd of over 600 fighters, coaches and fans on July 23.
By: Jeff Papas, Pine Journal
“Lights Out in Barnum” was an unqualified success.
The first boxing card in memory held at the Carlton County Fairgrounds resulted in a crowd of over 600 fighters, coaches and fans on July 23.
Fighters from seven different clubs took part, and promoter/ coach Phil Angell couldn’t have been more pleased with the night and its results.
“We had fighters from Minneapolis, St. Paul, Rochester, Duluth, our area and St. Croix, Wisconsin,” Angell said. “It was fabulous. We had nothing but positive reviews.”
The results were good as well for the local fighters, taking part with the new C&C Northland Boxing Club in Barnum. Local fighters won four out of five bouts on the 11-bout card.
Angell’s son Drew, Tyler Gamst, heavyweight Jason Youngberg and Bradley Bailey all won their fights, while Josh Hautajarvi lost a close decision.
Gamst and Youngberg were fighting for the first time, with Gamst winning on a first-round TKO and Youngberg rallying with a big third round to win his fight.
“He (Youngberg) was losing after the first round,” Angell said. “He fought a guy who was about 290 pounds with very quick hands, but conditioning and heart helped him to come back.”
Officials for the bouts came in from St. Cloud.
“We didn’t get any hometown decisions,” Angell said. “My son Drew almost needed to knock his guy out in the third round to win and came back with a huge round. Our fighters showed a lot of heart.”
As important, however, was the overall success of the night.
“We got people who want to be on our mailing list, we have new fighters ready to start training, and we got a lot of compliments,” Angell said. “We made sure the coaches and fighters from out of town knew we couldn’t do this without them. We treated them well.
“Boxing hasn’t been in Barnum as long as the old timers can remember,” Angell added. “So we got a whole new crowd of fans. They’re not used to watching live boxing, but if we grow, the (fairgrounds) aren’t going to be big enough.”
Angell estimated the crowd at over 600 people, about 400 short of capacity.
“We think we can do better next time,” he said. “I really believe in our fans. Next time we aren’t going to pick a summer card day with other activities going on. I think our next problem is going to be finding a bigger place.”
Angell also said parents approached him saying they didn’t know the event could be for families.
“I think some people have a different feeling now about what boxing really is,” Angell said. “We had young kids enjoying a family show. The first fight was between 11-year olds. Some people didn’t realize they could bring their kids.”
“We served snow cones in concessions,” Angell said. “Hopefully next time we need more.”