Truly Independent Wrestling preparing for its next live card at the Berkshire Mall
Co-Founder Lance Madewell is not only proud of what the wrestling promotion has accomplished in its first year, but is also excited about his company's future plans at the mall.
"We have increased the production value of our company," Madewell said. "Our entryway is looking great and we also have added a TV for walk-out videos. We have a mixture of different things to help to show people that this is real. We have really turned a corner in our first year, both of our last two shows have turned a profit."
While TIW's two previous shows, Fall Frenzy and the November Knockout have turned a profit, the promotions has had a total of five shows since moving to where Old Navy was once located at the Berkshire Mall.
"I am really proud of what we have done in such a short time," Madewell said. "People will see us out and tell us that they enjoyed the show. We have a lot of people that are active with this company and it's great to see."
While Madewell believes TIW's first year was a success, he already has some goals in place for the second anniversary.
"I want us to have a bigger role in the community," Madewell explained. "I feel like we are a good alternative for youth looking for something to do during the week. I honestly would love to do more for the mall. We opened up the venue for Halloween to hand out candy and show some Halloween movies. We also have a video game tournament coming up. For me, this doesn't have to just be a wrestling venue, it can be an entertainment venue."
Back in July, co-founder Scott Fellows, who has been wrestling for 14 years, mentioned how he wanted to make sure the company has a "community-feel" and believes they have accomplished that in their first year.
"We have a lot of really good people here," Fellows said. "Not only are we a family-orientated company, we are a family-run company. My wife runs the box office and my kids always watch the show. I am proud of not just me and Lance, but everyone else who helps out.
"I am happy as long as we had somebody come out and enjoy the shows. Over the last couple we have continued to grow and grow. With our upcoming show we are expecting to grow even more."
Not only does TIW host shows, it's training students who want to become professional wrestlers.
"We have six or seven students that are all progressing," Fellows said.
Both Fellows and Madewell would like to see their trainees graduate and take part in matches before their two-year anniversary. Two of the trainees, Andy Maguire and Zac Batacchi, see training as professional wrestlers as a childhood dream come true.
"I've been watching wrestling since I was four years old," Maguire said. "I thought it was the coolest thing ever. Now that TIW is in Berkshire County, I can [become a wrestler]. This is what I've only been able to dream about."
Batacchi first found the company by walking through the mall in July and seeing a poster for TIW's Clean Slate show.
"I saw the show and they mentioned the training facility," he said. "This is something I wanted to do my entire life. I was brought up by it. My older brother, my mother, and my father all watched wrestling."
Tickets for The Clash Before Christmas 2 are $10, while kids ages 6-12 are $5 and anyone five-and-under gets in for free. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. with the first bell at 6. For more information about TIW's shows and training program, check out the Facebook page, call 413-281-6075 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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