Boozing Within the Lines at “Over The Line”

Annual bawdy beach party kicking off this weekend

The beach booze ban is shaking things up a little at this years alcohol fueled Over The Line competition. You can still drink, but  there are restrictions.

“OMBAC has been issued a special event permit by the City of San Diego that will allow people to consume alcohol in permitted areas and during specific hours. As part of our special event permit, you will also be allowed to bring your own alcohol to the tournament,” according to the Old Mission Beach Athletic Club website.

Signs will be posted to show where alcoholic beverages will be permitted.

"Most areas of Fiesta Island are not included in this special event permit and you will be subject to the alcohol ban if you are not in one of the designated permitted areas," the website states.

O.T.L. is not for your parents, your kids or the feint of heart and even though participants insist O.T.L. is all about fun, few would describe it as "good, clean fun".

It's  "part sport, part party" and it dates back more than 50 years -- #56 kicks off this weekend and concludes July 18 and 19.  It began when a group of young guys hanging out at Mission Beach couldn't find enough other guys to play a game of baseball so they invented O.T.L., which requires only three members on a team.  Those same guys are still at it today, if not playing, then as members of OMBAC, which stands for the Old Mission Beach Athletic Club.

Over the years, as more people got into this variation of softball played on the beach (and even more turned out to watch), O.T.L. just sort of grew, turning what started as a fun little game into a giant drunken beach party with baseball more an excuse than the main event.  It got so big that finally the tournament was moved from Mission Beach to Fiesta Island and it got so bad that police finally stepped in and forced organizers to clamp down on the nudity and rowdiness or face cancellation.

These days, with hundreds of teams competing from all over the world, (and the beer and bawdiness confined and controlled) the event is held over two weekends with the really serious contenders battling it out for a trophy and bragging rights on the final day.

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