City Hosts Pre-fight Tailgating Party

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POSTED: Tuesday, June 12, 2012 - 4:51pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, June 12, 2012 - 10:45pm

There's no alcohol inside the Sun Bowl for Saturday night's world middleweight boxing match, but The El Paso Convention and Visitors Bureau is throwing a tailgate party with alcohol not far from the stadium.

"We wanted to add another dimension to the fight that's taking place this Saturday," said Bryan Crowe with the CVB.

The CVB is partnering with a local business to stage the tailgate party on a parking lot at Oregon and Robinson.

It will be the only lot near UTEP where people are allowed to tailgate with alcoholic beverages.

“I think that's a partial victory there. I think everyone will be happy about that, the ones that want to tailgate," said boxing promoter Lester Bedford.

The CVB said this is a great opportunity for boxing fans.

"I think it will be in high demand, we only have 96 parking spaces in the lot which for a fight that's going to draw over 10,000 to 15,000 people, there's gonna be some demand," said Crowe.

The tailgate event starts at 3 p.m. Saturday. The CVB is encouraging you to reserve your tailgate parking spot now, for $20 through Ticketmaster.

“We got a DJ that's gonna be out there. First of all, it's great parking and you can tailgate so it's gonna be really nice," Crowe said.

Some people said it may cause problems.

“They're gonna have more people that are drunk going, but if they were selling the beer, they could at least control it with the sales," said UTEP student Brandon Mugrage.

But the CVB said it hopes the tailgate will encourage El Pasoans to buy tickets to the fight.

"We haven't had a landmark boxing event since the 90s. This is a tremendous opportunity for us to show the world what El Paso is all about and you can be part of the action," said Crowe.

Promoter Lester Bedford said he expects 20,000 to 30,000 people to fill the Sun Bowl.

He said it will be a great event, despite the alcohol ban.

"The alcohol issue I know is part of the storyline, but the bottom line is that we have a great boxing event and that's what it's all about for us," said Bedford.

Bedford said his team is still working to get the alcohol ban lifted at the Sun Bowl Saturday night, hoping that will convince more fans to attend the fight.

You can buy tickets to the tailgate party and the fight at http://www.ticketmaster.com/search?tm_link=tm_homeA_header_search&=&user_input=el+paso&q=el+paso.

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