ST. LOUIS — The 34th annual Guns ‘N Hoses charity boxing event has been postponed to 2021 due to a recent surge in COVID-19 cases.
During the annual showdown, police officers and firefighters compete in the boxing ring to raise money for The Backstoppers, an organization that supports the families of fallen and injured first responders.
This year's event was scheduled for Nov. 25, which is the night before Thanksgiving; a new date has not yet been set.
“To our amazing fans and supporters, it is with heavy hearts that we announce this years boxing showdown will be postponed,” Guns ‘N Hoses posted on its Instagram account Thursday morning. “Due to a surge in Covid-19 cases and the recent restrictions, our staff has decided it would be in everyone’s best interest to reschedule our 34th annual event at a later date in 2021. We will have more information in the following weeks.”
Due to the coronavirus, the audience would have been limited to sponsors, with restricted seat capacity and social distancing in place. The event was going to be broadcast live on TV for people to watch at home.
“The health and welfare of all of our fighters, sponsors, as well as our event staff, are our highest priority,” said David Stokes, president of Grey Eagle Distributors, in a news release. “For the past several weeks, we have been closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation with partners and city officials and came to the decision this was the best for all involved.”
Guns 'N Hoses Boxing Association Executive Director Steve Holley said that "out of respect for all those involved, I believe it is the right thing to do."
Coronavirus cases have been spiking in the St. Louis area, with St. Louis and St. Louis County both expected to announce new restrictions by the weekend.