Interest to host a fight is something that’s been brewing for a couple of years now. At one point the City had been canvassing the community to gauge interest on the subject asking for feedback on Facebook, community websites, magazines and newspapers as well as direct letters to relevant parties, and the results were in favour for the most part.
City Councillor Byron Stewart says since it is no longer up to municipalities to create athletic commissions, it is easier to host events.
“This would go back to 2011 I believe, when mixed martial arts was first on the scene here that there was interest within the community to host a fight,” Stewart explains. “At that time the province had put it to the municipalities to create an athletic commission who would then provide the rules and regulations and licensing for any such mixed martial arts events. That changed as of May of this year. The province will license the events themselves, so we don’t have to worry about liability insurance, different things like that. The province covers those for mixed martial arts.”
Before the change, the City had agreed to look at the possibility of setting up an athletic commission.
When asked if FortSt. John could potentially host MMA events, Stewart said all the city needs is a promoter to come forward that is interested in putting on such an event.
“Absolutely”, Stewart said emphatically. “If there is a promoter that wants to do it. I know that there have been events in Dawson Creek and Tumbler Ridge recently, it would just be a matter of a local person or group to go through the licensing process to have the necessary persons in place and documents in place.”