By John DiSanto – PhillyBoxingHistory.com
Congratulations to promoter J Russell Peltz who celebrates his 44th anniversary as a boxing promoter tonight at the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, PA. On September 30, 1969, a then-22 year old Peltz promoted his first card at the Blue Horizon in North Philadelphia. At the time, Russell was a sportswriter for the Philadelphia Bulletin but he had bigger dreams than writing about boxing. So the life-long fight fan transitioned from the sports desk to a ringside seat, and the rest, as they say, was history.
The great Bennie Briscoe scored a first round KO that night in 1969 on the first card promoted by Peltz. Fellow future-Philly legends Cyclone Hart and Boogaloo Watts also fought on the same stacked card. The show more than sold out the Blue Horizon that night (attendance 1,606) and was the start of big things for Peltz and Philadelphia boxing. In 2004, Peltz entered the International Boxing Hall of Fame. As tonight’s well-matched and crowd-pleasing card in Bethlehem confirms, Russell Peltz is still going strong.
To read more on the Philly fight scene – past and present – visit www.PhillyBoxingHistory.com.