The PJ Tatler

Sandcastles? Verboten! Obama Boots Kids' Sandcastle Contest off Beach

If you thought the Shutdown Follies couldn’t get any more absurd and spiteful, you were quite mistaken.

It was announced today that an annual sandcastle contest on San Francisco’s Ocean Beach has been cancelled out of sheer malice by the Obama administration, despite the fact that the beach on which it is held — part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area — normally has no lifeguards, no rangers, is permanently open to the public, and requires no funds for day-to-day operations:

A popular youth sandcastle contest on San Francisco’s Ocean Beach is the latest local victim of the federal government shutdown, event organizers said today.

The Leap 30th Anniversary Sandcastle Contest was planned for Saturday, but the continued standoff in Congress over the federal budget is causing organizers to postpone the event until a later date.

Thousands of people were expected to attend the free event, with more than 20 local schools participating. Leap, a local arts advocacy nonprofit, has held the contest for the past three decades.

In a letter sent to participating schools and teams, event organizers said officials with the Golden Gate National Recreation Area notified them on Monday that the contest could no longer take place since Ocean Beach is part of the GGNRA and is closed.

We were told that we could be fined for trespassing and that our permit was no longer valid,” the letter said. “We were also told that our event could be shut down by park rangers or by San Francisco police.”

This comes on the heels of the announcement earlier today that the Cliff House restaurant, which overlooks the beach where the contest is held, was also ordered to be closed indefinitely.

A nonprofit that helps children wants to hold their 30th anniversary sandcastle contest? GET OFF MY BEACH says the president.

And the children cried.

Also see:

Shutdown Showdown: SF’s Cliff House Defies Obama Admin, Reopens — and Is Forced to Close AGAIN