An Ocean Beach 4th of July tradition is on the chopping block. No, not fireworks – marshmallows.
The OB community marshmallow fight dates back decades, but if members of the Ocean Beach Community Council succeed with their newly implemented “Mallow Out” campaign, the sticky event will not continue into the future.
“The marshmallow war has to end. It’s become unsafe. It’s definitely unclean for the community, it’s a mess” said Dave Cieslak, a member of the OB council.
Cieslak said last summer’s 4th of July marshmallow fight went too far, spilling off the beach onto the sidewalks and streets, leaving behind a giant mess. This included more than 2,300 pounds of trash on local streets and beaches, as well as some injured bystanders.
Today, remnants of the marshmallows can still be seen as stains on the sidewalk where a veterans’ memorial is built. The 2013 war also raised safety concerns when some people started throwing frozen marshmallows.
During the past year the OB Town Council has done surveys and fielded what they say are hundreds of complaints from locals.
“We’re encouraging the businesses not to sell marshmallows, we’re asking the people to not come to OB with marshmallows, to not purchase them and throw them here,” said Cieslak.
But not everyone is happy about the end of the marshmallow war.
“It’s unique, I never seen it anywhere else other than here. I think it should continue every year,” said Maserati Seaton.
Supporters say concerned locals should just stay away and don’t believe the “Mallow Out” campaign will succeed.
“What are you going to do? Arrest a bunch of people? I don’t think so,” said Montana Kent.
The Ocean Beach Town Council is looking for volunteers to sign up as peace patrol officers who will collect marshmallows on the 4th of July. They also plan to hold a joint news conference with members of the San Diego Police Department in the days prior to the holiday as part of the effort to stop the marshmallow war.