But the New England Golden Gloves is a tradition in Lowell like no other.
For over 70 years, the New England Gloves have entertained fight fans from around the region right in Downtown Lowell at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium.
Legendary names such as Rocky Marciano, Marvin Hagler, Sugar Ray Leonard, and of course Lowell’s own Micky Ward have all participated locally in the Gloves, which held its first edition in Lowell in 1947.
The Golden Gloves Tournament is open to amateur boxers aged 16 and older. Since the first Golden Gloves tournament in 1923, the Golden Gloves of America, Inc. and its member franchises have provided an opportunity and environment for young athletes to develop lifetime skills. Hundreds of dedicated administrators, coaches, trainers and counselors have unselfishly spent countless times and effort to assist young people in the development of personal character and athletic skills. The Golden Gloves program has led the way in promoting amateur boxing in the United States and has produced the majority of competitors for America’s boxing teams in the Pan-Am and Olympic Games.
While Lowell has hosted the New England championship for the past seven decades, the National Golden Gloves Tournament of Champions was also held at the Auditorium twice, in 1973 and 1995. Every year the winners of the New England Golden Gloves receive invitations to the Tournament of Champions.
Many of the budding pugilists that compete at the New England Golden Gloves get their training at the legendary West End Gym in Lowell under the tutelage of Arthur Ramalho. The gym was of course featured in the Hollywood hit, The Fighter, based on the real life story of Lowell brothers Micky Ward and Dicky Eklund.
There’s a City Hall connection too–former Mayor Patrick Murphy trained at Ramalho’s West End Gym as a young boy with his twin brother Dan, who would go on to box in the Silver Mittens and Golden Gloves. Patrick’s own fighting career continued with winning the intercollegiate boxing championship in Ireland and serving on the Lowell City Council.
This year, Lowell’s Golden Gloves will be held on each and every Thursday night from opening night on January 7th to the New England regional championship bouts on March 7th. Visit www.lowellgoldengloves.com/ for more information!