A small crowd of only about 200 wrestling fans was in the house at the Blooming Prairie High School as the BP Lions hosted the Blossom Brawl on Saturday night, Jan. 11.
Professional wrestling moments were provided by wrestlers from the American Wrestling Federation (AWF).
Chris Staloch, president of the Blooming Prairie Lions, said he was disappointed with the sparse crowd but said he believed many who attended were entertained.
The AWF plans on bringing its wrestlers to Blooming Prairie once again next summer. The Blooming Prairie Servicemen's Club is planning to host an AWF wrestling card on Saturday, June 27.
Local businesses helped sponsor the professional card on Saturday.
Sponsors included Krejci Ford, Vandal's Family Market, Joe's Repair Service, Miner's Outdoor & Rec., Bunkies Golf Academy Grille & Lanes, Dairy Queen, Sportstitch, Darrick's Preferred Auto, Bishop Excavating, Pizza Cellar/Cue Company and Prairie Plumbing & Heating.
The younger fans got into the rhythm of chanting for the good guys and booing the bad guys.
The evening's event was preceded by the playing of the U.S. National Anthem.
First match of the meeting featured Nick Nelson vs. Patient X. Nelson was the victor. Four more matches followed with the finale headlining AWF heavyweight champion JDX defending his title against newcomer Sterling Bond.
It's no coincidence that Bond resembled a young Cassius Clay, aka Muhammad Ali. He was accompanied by a female acquaintance who also was a part of the final match action.
Grabbing a microphone, Bond told wrestling fans that they were about to see history. "I am going to beat JDX," he yelled, mimicking the actions of Clay/Ali.
JDX, known as Justin outside of the wrestling ring, successfully defended his title. He said his meeting with Bond was their first encounter. During their match, two referees were knocked unconscious. One regained consciousness to declare JDX the winner.
During intermission, JDX, wearing a t-shirt proclaiming "Black Wrestlers Matter," posed for photos and signed autographs. Hailing from Chicago, Justin said he is a two-time champ. He trained with Ken Anderson of the Wrestling Academy to become a pro wrestler.
How does a pro wrestler stay in shape? "You hit the gym at least four times a week and eat healthy foods," JDX said.
Petey Brown, a native of Canon Falls, was one of the fan favorites. His autograph lines were the longest.
Brown defeated Koda Jacobs in the third match of the evening. Jacobs entered the ring, carrying a political lawn sign. He was running for something but nobody seemed to know what it was.
Brown said he began training five years ago and then joined the AWF. "I have a passion for it and it's chasing a dream," Brown said. He acknowledged that pro wrestling can be a dangerous sport. He said he has suffered broken ribs and a fractured ankle.
Another Minnesota wrestler, Levy Cruise, 22, wrestled in a tag team event. He is from Buffalo where he wrestled in high school. Cruise is known as a "high flyer" style of wrestler.
Other wrestlers in the ring Saturday night were: Crixus, The System and Rylie Jackson.
Concessions were provided by the Blooming Prairie High School Spanish Club.