PARKERSBURG - On Friday and Saturday for the 28th year in Parkersburg, the Mid-Ohio Valley Toughman Contest will take over Memorial Fieldhouse at Parkersburg High School for two nights of ring action starting at 7:30 p.m., pitting amateur boxers in four weight categories for both men and women as they battle for 2013 Toughman supremacy.
The entry list, as of Tuesday, numbered 137. But West Virginia Toughman head honcho Jerry Thomas of West Virginia Sports Promotions knows that all of those who signed up to compete won't as ''Toughman flu'' will set in, with only about ''65 to 75 percent of them showing up, passing the physical and actually competing.''
For Thomas, from Clarksburg, who has been promoting Toughman in the state for 34 years and pro boxing for 36, he expects the weekend's Toughman show to be ''another great event in Parkersburg - as usual.''
Plus, any diehard West Virginia boxing fan ''will see a number of pro fighters over the course of the two days as we employ a lot them to work the corners or as instructors,'' said Thomas.
The weekend too will see the debut of two new referees for Thomas, as former pro boxers Chad ''The Taz'' Greenleaf (13-19-1 as a pro with six knockouts) of Parkersburg as well as ''The Golden Greek'' Brian Camechis (20-4 as a pro with nine KOs) from Glouster, Ohio will put on the striped shirt to perform their important duties as the third man in the ring.
In addition, NASCAR driver Jennifer Jo Cobb will be making an appearance Saturday night representing Network West Virginia.
Cobb, a motivational speaker and spokesperson, is NASCAR's only female driver-owner. Now a full-time driver on the circuit, Cobb made her national racing debut in 2002 after 10 years laboring for recognition in NASCAR's grass-roots Weekly Racing Series program.
Also, Marietta's Holly Watson, at 5-7 and 111 pounds, will not only be fighting in the Toughwoman lightweight division, but also working as a ring girl. According to Thomas, ''this will be the first time that anyone has done both the same night in the Parkersburg event.''
Good seats are still available, said Thomas, with advance tickets being sold until noon Friday at Memorial Fieldhouse and at Parkersburg Speedway stations on 7th Street, Pike Street, Murdoch Avenue and Emerson Avenue and in Marietta on North 7th Street for $20 general admission and $25 reserved.
Also, any remaining tickets will be sold at the door, beginning at 6 p.m. both nights.
For more information, please visit wvtoughman.com or call 1-800-2196-3897.