Mike Tyson leads the main event of a local boxing gym that doubles as a Christian mission

Legendary heavyweight champion Mike Tyson comes to a local boxing gym, not to fight, but to help raise money for Christian’s ongoing errands at the gym.

Shane Mane, CEO and director of the department at 5 Stones Fight Club in Annville, said Tyson, among other big boxing names such as “Irish” Mickey Ward, has been confirmed to appear at a VIP dinner and 15-fight boxing match scheduled for late October. in Palmyra.

“We have contracts for everyone on that list,” Mane told PennLive, referring to a slate of veteran boxers due to appear, including Tim Witherspoon, Iran Barkley, Riddick Bowie, Vinnie Paz, Vincent Pettway and Michael Olajide, among others.

Mane said the gym’s coach, Alan Plewis, simply started calling ex-pro fighters he knew to ask them to appear at the gym’s first-ever dinner and boxing match.

“Alan is saving up with Tyson, Lennox Lewis. He’s been around for a while. It’s been a while,” Manny said of Lewis, a Baltimore-born brawler who’s been boxing since the age of seven.

Mane said he met Lewis about 15 years ago when the former boxer’s hands were fighting for life – and losing. Since then, the two have teamed up to create a boxing gym that doubles as a church and Christian mission.

Mane said of Plewis: “He met Christ, and God radically changed his life.” “We’re working together, and we’re doing this kind of thing right now.”

Even the name of the Fight Club, 5 Stones, is a biblical book, referring to the only ammunition David armed himself with in his great confrontation with the giant, Goliath.

“Everyone has giants in their life, whether it’s from addiction, depression, anxiety, or fitness issues,” Mane said. “The whole focus is on getting people physically fit, mentally focused, and spiritually charged.”

To do this, the boxing gym clears the ropes on Sundays, and Mane preaches straight from the ring to a gathering of about 80 fighters, some of them veterans, who are in various stages of rising from life.

Photo from a Sunday service held at the 5 Stones Fight Club in Anville, Pennsylvania (photo foreground)image provided

As for Plewis, he doesn’t just teach gym boxers to “stick and move.” It also offers lessons in everyday life.

“He loves to hang out and talk about life with men,” Mane said of Plewis. “He says anyone can teach someone to box. It’s the things in life that matter.”

These days, 5 Stones owns a 10,000-square-foot facility in Anneville, but its beginnings were humble.

“Our gym is the Sports Ministry. It started in my basement in 2008,” Mane said.

The mission of the Christian gym is moving beyond its actual location. Mane said there are regular foreign trips that include disaster relief, medical treatment, humanitarian aid and even some non-traditional missions — some might say dangerous.

“We smuggled 25,000 Bibles into Iran,” said Mani, a former Marine and Iraq War vet. “It’s not a typical missionary organization, if you will. It’s a fighting gym. We have a lot of vets walking in our doors. The mentality is a little different: ‘Where in the world can we go?’ Let’s go there’.”

Mane added that fundraising events for the gym will help fund future missions.

A VIP Gala Dinner featuring all selected professional fighters is set for Friday evening, October 28, at the gym. The cost is $100 per person, with a limited capacity of 300 people.

The 15-match amateur boxing match is scheduled to take place on Saturday, October 29, at 3 p.m., at the In the Net sports facility outside Palmyra. General admission is $25 and first-row seats in the ring are $65.

5 Stones also sells 10-seat ringside tables for $2,500, which will feature visits with all of the veteran guest fighters, including Tyson. The cost of sponsoring the event is $5,000. Additional details here.

Mike Tyson leads the local boxing events

Mike Tyson, at the height of his boxing prowess, knocked out Steve Zuski in the third round in 1986.AP

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