It’s a time-honored tradition. After sunset, Californians gather at the beach and build a bonfire in one of the concrete fire pits that dot the beaches all up and down the coast. Whether the focus of a beach party, a night of star-gazing, or an impromptu hot dog and marshmallow roast, the pits are a cultural phenomenon in California.
Now that tradition is in danger of disappearing forever. Last week, the ranks of State-maintained fire pits were reduced when the following seven were removed due to budget shortfalls
- Bolsa Chica State Beach, Huntington Beach
- Crystal Cove State Park, Newport Beach
- Doheny State Beach, Dana Point
- Huntington State Beach, Huntington Beach
- San Onofre State Beach, near San Clemente
- Silver Strand State Beach, on San Diego’s Coronado Island
- South Carlsbad State Beach, Carlsbad
California cities are following suit. San Diego recently ordered the removal of 186 concrete fire pits from its beaches and shoreline parks, including those located in Mission bay and on the beaches of La Jolla, Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, and Ocean Beach.
Those in favor of the money saving measures insist the removal of fire pits is a good idea, since they are regularly used to burn trash that ends up littering the beach, and bonfire parties can often get out of control. Opponents say the move will forever alter the essence of the city. City and State officials, who seem generally pleased to be rid of the onerous task of maintaining the pits, point out that people are still welcome to build fires in their personal barbeque grills.
Video Credit: TVman1981
Article by Barbara Weibel at Hole In The Donut Travels