The Soo Line Boxing Club in Weyburn has been a part of the community for many years and has helped to produce some of the top boxers within the province as well as the whole country.

The club was created by the late and great Henry "Hank" Hartenberger who immigrated to Canada with his family at the age of one and settled in Weyburn, Saskatchewan in 1937. He competed in the Olympic Boxing Trials in 1956, and that same year was the Saskatchewan Middleweight Champion.

For more than 40 years, Hartenberger was a boxing organizer and coach in Weyburn. Sadly, Hank passed away in 2018 but he left behind the Soo Line Boxing Club and numerous local boxers that he trained.

After having to shut down the club last year due to the pandemic they are happy to announce that they are now back open to the public and are looking for more youth to join.

"We've had a couple of pretty good turnouts so far and we're looking forward to a great season," expressed Clint Ducharme, one of the boxing coaches at the club. "Armin's going to be down there coaching and so is Jesse. My son Wayne will be there to help also. He hurt his arm so he can't train right now but he's still coming down to help everyone else train and get ready for when we have to go to events."

Regular training sessions take place at the club on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7:00 p.m. until 8:30-9:00 p.m. depending on the turnout and how the program is set for that particular night.

The nights always start with a run, various cardio, stretching, and skipping rope then they move into hitting the heavy bag and using the focus pads with help from the coaches.

"You can just come down to the club and we'll get you registered there," Ducharme stated. "If you're looking to compete we can help you out with that but if you're just looking for a great workout we can help you with that also. We have three provincial champions that are still holding their titles today. So we're hoping that we can have a great turnout and that the provincials can be held again really soon."

Ducharme added that boxing can help teach youth a number of different lessons such as respect, confidence, focus, and much more.

He also said that the club also offers private training for anyone that is interested in taking their training to the next level.

They are currently seeking more youth to join as well as new sponsors to help make the club more successful when it comes to training for competitions.

"The guys down at the club are planning to do some fundraising soon as well to be able to afford the travel costs associated with going to upcoming events," told Ducharme. "A lot of these events are really far away like Calgary or Edmonton. So it's hard for them to foot the bill. As a non-profit organization, it's hard for us to get everybody to an event."

The Soo Line Boxing Club is located at 301 Coteau Avenue West in Weyburn, Saskatchewan and you can reach them by phone at (306) 842-5817.

You can also feel free to follow the Soo Line Boxing Club on Facebook.

A past boxing event that took place in Weyburn. (photo by Denis Conroy)