When Mariusz “Mark” Kolodziej first opened his businesses of Hudson Bread and Breadman Café on Tonnelle Avenue in North Bergen, he quickly took a strong hold of the baking goods industry in Hudson County.
Kolodziej then expanded his businesses to include the boxing game, first opening the Global Boxing Gym next to his bread and baking businesses, then venturing into the world of managing and promoting local professional boxers.
Now, Kolodziej is taking the next step, producing local boxing shows right in his world-class boxing gym.
Kolodziej recently announced the formation of the Global Boxing Series, a collection of professional boxing cards that will take place right inside his already established Global Boxing Gym.
The first of these cards is slated for Saturday, Sept. 24 at 5 p.m. One card will be held each month.
Kolodziej said that he came up with the idea to host the local boxing shows because many of the fighters who train regularly at Global Boxing and fight under his Global Boxing promotions group were having a tough time finding suitable cards.
“We have a few young Polish fighters training here and living here and they have to go to places like Philadelphia or Long Island to find fights,” Kolodziej said. “It’s a common problem for everyone to find a place to fight. They have to fight to bring up their record. It’s hard for them to find a decent show. So I thought this would be perfect for the up-and-comers, give them a chance to shine and get their names out there. I’m doing it for a lot of the guys who train here.”
Kolodziej said that he can transform his gym into a 500-seat arena, by moving some of the equipment and putting in temporary seating and bleachers. Each card will feature approximately eight bouts of either four or six-rounds, enough for the aspiring boxer.
“We don’t have to go out and rent a venue, because I own the place,” Kolodziej said. “It’s a good stepping stone for the young fighter. If someone proves to be good enough here, then they could get a larger show later on at a bigger venue. But this will be a start. I’m extremely excited. We’re bringing boxing back to North Bergen in a cleaner venue.”
Kolodziej has secured the services of respected matchmaker Renee Aiken, who is already putting together the first card that will feature North Bergen resident and junior lightweight prospect Kamil Laszczyk.
Ticket prices for the Global Boxing Series will also be extremely reasonable, beginning at $30.
Kolodziej said that the fights will also be broadcast live over the internet.
“There’s already big interest in places like Japan, Germany, England and obviously Poland,” Kolodziej said. “If this works, this is a series I’d like to see last forever, once a month on a Saturday night. These are the kinds of shows that will help bring pro boxing back to North Bergen, where it belongs.”
Kolodziej has another plan that he’s working on. He wants to build a 3,000-seat arena directly next door to his current businesses in North Bergen. He’s working with developers on the proposal.
For now, the Global Boxing Series is a start.
“We want to keep it with a small club atmosphere and make it fun for the fans,” Kolodziej said.
The other scheduled cards are slated for Oct. 15, Nov. 11 and Dec. 10. For more information about the Global Boxing Series, visit www.globalboxing.com. If any fighters are interested in fighting on these cards, contact Renee Aiken at email@example.com. – Jim Hague Jim Hague can be reached at OGSMAR@aol.com.