Bullet Club Beach Party Coming to Tampa for WrestleMania Weekend

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NJPW Bullet Club leader Tama Tonga at Bullet Club Block Party

Tama Tonga is bringing Bullet Club back to WrestleMania weekend.

Tonga and his Bullet Club brethren will be back for a second straight April this ’Mania weekend, bringing the Bullet Club Beach Party to Whiskey Joe’s in Tampa on Saturday, April 4.

“This is a celebration,” said Tonga. “It’s a celebration of wrestling, it’s a celebration of Bullet Club, and it’s a celebration of New Japan Pro Wrestling.”

Tonga led a successful Bullet Club Block Party catered by Jimmy’s Seafood last year before WrestleMania 35, and the event was so well received that he was inspired to hold a second event.

“This time we’re doing it on the beach, in Tampa, my home state,” said Tonga. “I want to knock it out of the park, and I’m looking forward to the party.

“Everyone had a great time last year, the response we got was all positive. People showed their love on our big sold-out Madison Square Garden weekend. That meant a lot to me. I was grateful for everyone’s support.”

Tonga is no longer one-half of the IWGP tag team champions. He and his brother Tanga Loa dropped the titles at last weekend’s Wrestle Kingdom 14 to Juice Robinson and David Finlay.

“The match didn’t turn out the way we wanted,” said Tonga. “Fin and Juice are a good team, a solid team, and we had a long reign with the belts. It didn’t go the way we wanted at Wrestle Kingdom, so the goal now is to get our belts back and move forward.”

In addition to Tonga and Loa, the Bullet Club Beach Party will also include “Switchblade” Jay White, KENTA, Bad Luck Fale, Haku, Bone Soldier and El Phantasmo, with more guests expected to be added in the coming weeks. There will be a social media presence for the party on both Twitter and Instagram, and tickets are available beginning Friday, Jan. 10.

“It was a very positive atmosphere last year, and it resonated with me how much fun the fans were having and how much fun I was having, too,” said Tonga. “We got to feel the fans’ love for Bullet Club and New Japan. The process was really, really fun, and that’s why we’re doing a second one—to recreate that energy.”

Justin Barrasso can be reached at JBarrasso@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @JustinBarrasso.