The parking lot at Cooper’s Seafood Waterfront is about to be painted red — again.
The annual Pittston Tomato Festival Tomato Fights will take place at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 22 in the parking lot of Cooper’s, located at 304 Kennedy Blvd. The event has been a staple of the festival since 2002, when the first fight was held at Cooper’s.
Entry fee is $10 and includes protective eye goggles. T-shirts can be purchased for $12, and all participants must register in advance at Cooper’s. Space is limited to the first 150 people, and participants must be at least 15 years of age.
The event is sponsored by Cooper’s and all proceeds will benefit Greater Pittston charities.
The Tomato Fights feature truckloads of tomatoes being dumped into the parking lot and everyone is fair game as they crush and throw tomatoes at each other.
With over 5,000 pounds of rotten and squished tomatoes being used, the fights will last around five minutes and participants will divide and face off in a battle in which there are no losers. The trick is not only to gather and throw, but also to duck and throw.
The tradition of the tomato fights first began in 1944 in Bunol, Spain, and it is safe to say local participants are happy that Pittston adopted the event.
The cleanup process involves bulldozers scraping up the tomatoes and fire hoses washing the red off the parking lot. The tomatoes are then ground up and dumped into the sewers.
Reach Nick Wagner at 570-991-6406 or on Twitter @Dispatch_Nick