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John Shirah, wearing red lipstick , pink spandex and calling himself the Wild Irish Rose, took abuse from both fans and fellow wrestlers at the Frontier Lounge on U.S. 31 in Decatur on Sunday. Dishing it out here is JDAWG. Shirah's tag-team partner, Antney, witnesses the mayhem.
Daily photo by John Godbey
John Shirah, wearing red lipstick , pink spandex and calling himself the Wild Irish Rose, took abuse from both fans and fellow wrestlers at the Frontier Lounge on U.S. 31 in Decatur on Sunday. Dishing it out here is JDAWG. Shirah's tag-team partner, Antney, witnesses the mayhem.

Fun in the parking lot
Wrestle-mania
in Decatur

Moulton circuit owner brings
Outlaw wrestling to River City

By Deangelo McDaniel
dmcdaniel@decaturdaily.com 340-2469

Wearing red lipstick, pink spandex, pink mitts and black boots with pink strings, John Shirah strutted to a perplexed audience.

Some booed. Some laughed. Others just stared.

Twitching as he walked and referring to his wrestling name, Shirah said: "You just love the Wild Irish Rose. You just love me."

They did love the Wild Irish Rose.

For almost five minutes in a wrestling match Sunday, Shirah and his tag-team partner, known as Antney, thrilled the almost 50 people who gathered in the Frontier Lounge parking lot on U.S. 31 in Decatur.

They are regulars on the Outlaw Championship Wrestling circuit that Vince Rossman owns.

Based in Moulton, where wrestlers compete every Saturday night, Rossman brought the sport to Decatur on Sunday.

"We're trying to offer people here some alternative entertainment," said Rossman, who has been wrestling for 12 years.

Now 39, Rossman's wrestling name is "Vinny Mac." He said he has been a fan of the sport all his life.

'I remember going to Birmingham on Monday nights when I was young," he said. "This is just a passion that I have."

Rossman hopes that people in Decatur are as passionate as he is about wrestling. He plans to try the sport once per month in the River City. If response is favorable, he may increase the number of times he sets his ring up in Decatur.

Fan interaction

Angelique Harrison, 20, of Marion County is a frequent spectator at Outlaw Championship Wrestling. She was in Decatur on Sunday cheering and interacting with wrestlers as if she were attending a national championship game.

"When you're screaming and talking to the wrestlers, it makes it a lot more fun," she said.

Harrison said interacting with wrestlers relaxes her.

"I can get rid of my stress from work," she said.

Harrison was one of the spectators agitating Shirah before and after he entered the ring.

"I'm a pretty man," Shirah yelled toward Harrison.

"You're not a man" Harrison said.

"I'm here to do a man's job," he said.

Rising from her seat with her finger pointed, Harrison screamed: "You're not a man."

Shirah, who is from Tennessee, wrestles as a gay man. No matter where he is wrestling, he draws attention.

'A fun character to play'

"It's a fun character to play," he said.

Some of Shirah's signature moves are pinching opponents on the rear when they try pinning him and trying to kiss them in the ring.

"It's all fun," he explained. "It's just something to entertain the audience."

Rossman started Outlaw Wrestling in Moulton in November 2004.

He is one of about 12 wrestlers who perform every Saturday night in Moulton.

"Our goal is to bring the best independent wrestling to the area that we can," said Rossman, who wrestles as a bad guy.

"I like when people are hollering and screaming at me," he continued. "The audience gets tore up when I'm in the ring. Everybody loves a good bad guy."

Jason Myers, 26, wrestles and dresses as the character, Jason, in the movie "Friday The 13th."

He has been wrestling for about two years and has learned to ignore some of the pain that accompanies stunts in the ring.

"When you love it as much as I do, you don't worry about the pain," Myers said. "You just wrestle and entertain the audience."

On the Net

Outlaw Championship Wrestling, www.ocwprowrestling.com.

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