On Sunday, the Aprons For Gloves Boxing Association chose the 21 match ups that will contend for the privilege of entering the boxing ring at the Restaurant Rumble 2012. Only 12 pairs of fighters will ultimately square off against each other on July 25 in the Fei & Milton Wong Experimental Theatre at SFU. All of those who have reached this far since training began on April 16 are determined to make it to the final round.
Aprons for Gloves – The Cause
Aprons for Gloves is a Vancouver charity that was founded in 2012 by a group individuals in the service industry, most of whom live in Gastown and the Downtown Eastside. Some had joined the historic Astoria Boxing Club as a way to relieve stress and keep fit. They also discovered there a group of troubled youth who had found a positive environment through the mentorship of the coaches. When it was learned the club’s gym was in danger of closing, the idea of a Restaurant Rumble fundraiser was born to help fund a gym and buy equipment for Coach Dave Schuck’s non-profit boxing program.
Since then, the gym has closed, leaving several young men and women without a space to train and a place to turn for guidance and support. Aprons for Gloves sent out a call to the local service industry for participants, and over 50 people responded. Save on Meats donated their fourth floor meat lockers as a temporary training space where the boxing novices have been put through the rigours of learning footwork and proper fighting technique.
Shadow boxing it is not. The trainees’ commitment is reflected in the bruises they have borne and their newfound enthusiasm for a sport that has also given them personal growth. Shay Washburn of Woodland Smokehouse found the motivation to quit smoking. TacoFino’s Steve Da Cruz noted the dedication by all, regardless of their chances for even making it to the ring. The shared experience of helping to develop positive change in the lives of underprivileged youth has created new bonds and brought the service industry closer together.
Who do you want to see square off in the ring? My personal favourite is to see the Alibi Room’s Nigel Springthorpe and Hamish MacRae of Red Truck Brewing upping the ante from their arm wrestling at Central City Brewing. Pick your top three bouts online to help decide the final 12 pairs of contenders. The three match ups garnering the most votes will be the Restaurant Rumble main event, preceded by the other nine undercard bouts. Donate to your fighter of choice to ensure they reach their $2,000 pledge entry requirement.
Aprons For Gloves Restaurant Rumble 2012
July 25, 2012
Fei & Milton Wong Experimental Theatre
Goldcorp Centre for the Arts, Simon Fraser University
149 West Hastings Street, Vancouver
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