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MWO SUSPENDS OPERATIONS AMID CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK
The Michigan Wrestling Organization has joined the long list of other professional wrestling promotions, sports leagues, and other entertainment entities that whose operations have been impacted—and in many cases, grounded to a halt—by the outbreak of COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus. Because of the pandemic that is starting to wreak havoc on the United States, the promotion has suspended operations until further notice.
“This is certainly not a decision that we wanted to make, it is unquestionably the right decision in correlation to different rules and guidelines set by our local and state government,” said MWO chief executive officer Jason “the Basher” Clouse in a live address on the promotion’s Facebook page, “This is an unprecedented time in our lives and we want to make sure the best interests of the fans, the superstars, and the support staff is at the forefront.”
The state-wide ban on groups of more than 10 people handed down by Governor Gretchen Whitmer was the last nail in the coffin as officials scrambled to explore different options of how to get a live show out for MWO fans.
“With everything going on with the coronavirus outbreak, we really were stunned by how fast news was coming in and how these executive orders were changing,” said outgoing MWO commissioner Simon Paige, “Now, it’s just a wait and see type of thing at this point.”
As the pandemic started to stretch across the United States, the first sign of issues came when it was announced that the Karl Richter Community Center in Holly—which had just been announced as hosting venue for WrestleRama 26 in early May—informed Clouse that they were ordered to close their doors in the wake of the decision to close all K-12 schools in Michigan. The Holly school district still has control of the building that houses the Community Center. Upon the decision, the officials attempted to move WrestleRama to a closed-set ONTV Studio in Lake Orion to fill the April 11 time slot that had originally been planned as the “go-home” show for WrestleRama.
“Jason (Clouse) talked to ONTV director Joe Johnson and we started putting plans into motion to move WrestleRama to ONTV”, said organization executive JC Edwards, “But literally two days later, the studio ceased production of any new original content and shows. And that was pretty much the end of it."
At this point, there has been no official announcement as to what the live event schedule, specifically WrestleRama 26, will look like once the gathering bans have been lifted. In the video address, Clouse did say that the next confirmed date for the MWO will be their scheduled return to Fremont, Indiana on June 27. The date has tentatively been slated as Slam-a-Thon, but Clouse did not rule out the possibility that Fremont would host WrestleRama 26.
“We are continuing to monitor all the news and updates as this crisis continues,” said Edwards, “Once we have the green light to start putting things back together and prepare to return to the venues, we will then proceed accordingly. But I know Mr. Clouse will not even attempt it unless he knows that the roster and the fans will be safe doing so.”
Stay tuned to this website or on the MWO’s Facebook and Twitter pages for updated information.