British Columbia

Chilliwack council KOs mixed martial arts event

A Fraser Valley city council has sent a message to local promoters of mixed martial arts events that they are not welcome.

A Fraser Valley city council has sent a message to local promoters of mixed martial arts events that they are not welcome.

A request from Valley Fight to host an event at a city-owned venue was denied this week after Chilliwack city council voted to keep the fights out of city-owned facilities.

The vote came after a staff report cited concerns over the clientele the events would attract and the social impact of hosting fighting events.

Paul Daniel of Valley Fight said he is looking elsewhere for a larger venue, but has not given up on holding events in Chilliwack.

"We're actively pursuing other councils in the very local area and it's looking very good for us  And there is a new election coming up in Chilliwack so the political tide is going to turn our way, too. It's a matter of time before we get our way," Daniel said.

Daniel said he has already sold out six shows at a private hall on nearby First Nations land and now wants to expand.

"We typically get around 800 people per show. There is usually eight fights a card, so 16 fighters total, and it's a packed house. We're looking for a bigger venue. There is no doubt in my mind we can sell out a 1,500 seat venue," Daniel said.

The fights, which feature a combination of martial arts, boxing and wrestling, are legally sanctioned by the Fraser Valley Athletic commission, Daniel said 

Vancouver city council voted against sanctioning mixed martial arts fighting in September 2007.

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