A thrown tomato conveys a wide range of sentiments, from informing a comedian that you don't like his jokes to reminding a judge that you're definitely pleading insanity. Let your feelings fly with today's Groupon: for $30, you get admission to the Norcal Tomato Battle at Alameda County Fairgrounds in Pleasanton on Saturday, October 1 (up to a $60.98 value including fees). Admission includes:
- Access to live music and the beer garden
- Participation in the Tomato Battle
- One free beer (ages 21 and older)
The Tomato Battle unifies as many as 5,000 fruit-chucking fanatics for an afternoon of dancing to music, sipping libations, and flinging 300,000 pounds of roma tomatoes at one another. Mosh in a ketchup-covered fray that marries the traditions of Spain's La Tomatina tomato-throwing festival and Germany's Oktoberfest. Festivities commence at noon with registration and opening, followed by live entertainment and a costume contest. At 4:30 p.m., soldiers donning bathing suits, safety goggles, and well-treaded shoes converge on piles of past-ripe tomatoes and set about pelting people with fruits like sentient apple trees avenging the initial-carving of amorous teenagers. Beats and beer flow until past 7 p.m., when ruddy troops lay down their arms and rinse themselves clean of pulp and juice. An extra set of clothes is highly recommended.
All of the tomatoes used during the exhibition will have been previously marked for disposal, making the Tomato Battle an efficient and entertaining use of nonedible waste. Explore more unanswered questions in the website's frequently asked questions, along with a photo gallery of swimsuit-clad partiers who spent previous battles gleefully morphing themselves into human Red Hots.
Children younger than 14 are not permitted at the event. All attendees must sign a waiver online in order to attend.
At each of several one-day festivals held throughout the country, thousands of revelers unite in an epic clash of pulp, beer, and live music. Armed with a cache of 300,000 tomatoes, participants don protective bathing suits and goggles and hurl the fruit at one another during a two-hour battle. Throughout the afternoon, live music and costume contests offer an entertaining respite from the front lines, as bartenders dispense drafts of beer to attendees, refueling soldiers' morale before they resign to writing goodbye letters to their produce vendors back home. All tomatoes used during the event are past ripe and already fated for disposal, making the battle an efficient means of tossing them before their cursed transformation into singing Muppets.