Former UFC champion BJ Penn

Former UFC champion BJ Penn

CORONA, Calif. – The UFC on Saturday, during the UFC Gym grand opening in Corona, announced plans to further expand its brand and partner with B.J. Penn to open another gym in Waikiki, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Plans are in the preliminary stages for the gym’s opening, but early indications show that the gym will be available to the Waikiki community some time in early to mid 2012.

“Now, it’s going to be the B.J. Penn-UFC Gym. I’m very excited,” Penn said while attending the Corona UFC Gym grand opening. “I got my name on a building in Waikiki. I’m happy.”

With Penn’s name attached to this new gym, one can only wonder if more fighters will follow his lead and partner up with the UFC and its gym brand around the country.

UFC vice president of community relations Reed Harris confirmed that Penn is only the beginning. In the coming years, the UFC and its gym brand plan to partner with other marquee fighters to open more gyms in several communities.

“Today, they announced the UFC Gym in Hawaii,” Harris told MMAWeekly.com. “And it’s going to be a partnership between the UFC, the gym people, and also B.J. Penn. I think that’s also something we’re going to be seeing more of is the UFC partnering with signature fighters in their areas or the cities where they’re from or training in. This is really about the brand and what it’s going to be doing. The UFC brand, in the next few years, we’re going to see this brand grow internationally. Even with the gyms, et cetera, we’re going to see product everywhere.”

Penn, in speaking with MMAWeekly.com, also confirmed there will be several programs geared towards children at the Penn/UFC gym in Hawaii. The goal of being a positive force in the community looks to be one of the main focuses for Penn and the UFC Gym brand.

“What makes me very proud to be a part of this thing is that the company involved in putting the UFC Gym on (is) very community (oriented),” Penn said. “That’s a big thing for me when I get involved with something in Hawaii.”

The UFC Gym is known for making its efforts in reaching out to their local community. The gym located in Rosemead, Calif., last year implemented a program where over 300 children in the surrounding community participated in MMA-style training, fitness conditioning, and teamwork activities. The program was designed to help children build confidence and character through field trips, assemblies, and free passes to the gym. The UFC Gym’s program offered a unique way for youth to better their physical and mental health not seen in your typical community outreach program.

Got something to say? Weigh in with a thought of your own in the comments section below.

Erik Fontanez is a staff writer for MMAWeekly.com.
Follow
@Erik_Fontanez on Twitter or e-mail Erik a question or comment.

Follow MMAWeekly.com on Twitter and Facebook.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

UFC 190: Rousey vs. Correia expected to be above 900,000 PPV buys

  • 5 days ago
  • 0 views

It looks like Ronda Rousey has established herself as the top PPV draw in the UFC with an unexpected huge number of buys for UFC 190. Going into UFC 190, many pundits believed that Ronda Rousey takin read news >>

Bellator 146 set for Fresno's SaveMart Center, Josh Koscheck scheduled for card

  • 6 days ago
  • 1 views

Longtime UFC veteran Josh Koscheck is expected to make his Bellator MMA debut just a few miles from his longtime home in Fresno, Calif.Filed under: Bellator, Featured, Featured Videos, News read news >>

Scott Coker says up to 13K expected for 'Bellator 142: Dynamite' in San Jose

  • 12 days ago
  • 2 views

Bellator President Scott Coker’s homecoming under a new promotional banner is already tracking strong at the box office, he told MMAjunkie on Friday.Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Josh Thomson makes Bellator debut against Mike Bronzoulis at Bellator: Dynamite

  • 16 days ago
  • 0 views

Josh Thomson isn't wasting any time. Bellator's latest free-agent signing is expected to make his promotional debut on Sept. 19 against former Fightmaster runner-up Mike Bronzoulis, Bellator official read news >>

MMA fighter wins title while 12 weeks pregnant in Brazil

  • 17 days ago
  • 15 views

Kinberly Novaes was expected to make her RFA debut next week against Jocelyn Jones Lybarger, but won’t be able to step inside the cage. The Brazilian strawweight had some trouble cutting weight as so read news >>

Nick Diaz expected to stand before NAC in September for failed UFC 183 drug test

  • 20 days ago
  • 1 views

After another delay to Nick Diaz's NAC hearing for a failed drug test at UFC 183, it's expected that the Californian will stand before the commission in September. On Monday it was announced that Nic read news >>

Pic: Demian Maia has staph infection and as expected, it's disgusting (NSFW)

  • 20 days ago
  • 668 views

Mixed martial arts (MMA) fans were oh-so-close to witnessing a ridiculous battle of jiu-jitsu prowess between grappling masters and Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight contenders Demian read news >>

Former UFC lightweight Josh Thomson expected to join Bellator MMA

  • 22 days ago
  • 12 views

Former Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson is expected to sign with Bellator MMA after the UFC declined to give him a new contract. Less than two years ago, former Strikefroce LW champion J read news >>

UFC declines to re-sign Josh Thomson, who is expected to sign with Bellator MMA

  • 22 days ago
  • 11 views

Josh Thomson's latest UFC run has come to end. According to sources with knowledge of the situation, the UFC declined to offer Thomson a new contract once his most recent one expired following his lo read news >>

UFC Fight Night 73 results: Uriah Hall thumps Oluwale Bamgbose in first

  • 25 days ago
  • 22 views

NASHVILLE – If you expected a wild display of striking theatrics in Uriah Hall’s meeting with Oluwale Bamgbose, you were in for a surprise.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>