Ocean Beach Stuck on Fate of Annual Marshmallow War

Last year, the annual marshmallow fight left behind a

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The 4th of July Marshmallow Fight is an annual tradition in Ocean Beach, but the fate of the sticky tradition is being debated by residents who say the event has gotten destructive and out of hand. NBC 7's Steven Luke reports. (Published Wednesday, Jun 18, 2014)

    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.

    OB Debates Sticky Tradition

    [DGO] OB Debates Sticky Tradition
    Dozens of people in Ocean Beach showed up at a town council meeting to look at changing or eliminating the community's annual Fourth of July marshmallow fight. It's generated controversy this year, after some people reported getting hurt. NBC 7's Nicole Gonzales reports. (Published Thursday, Jul 25, 2013)

    “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.

    Marshmallow Fight Aftermath Cleared

    [DGO] Marshmallow Fight Aftermath Cleared
    Volunteers donned gloves and carried bags as they picked up the gooey remnants of the infamous OB Fourth of July Marshmallow Fight. NBC 7's Elena Gomez reports. (Published Friday, Jul 5, 2013)

    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.

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