Water gun stunt damages historic San Diego pond

By Arturo Garcia
Monday, August 13, 2012 10:24 EDT
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Balboa Park water fight screenshot 081312
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Authorities in San Diego are looking for the people responsible for a social media-driven water gun fight that damaged a local landmark.

According to U-T San Diego, the “Balboa Park Water Gun Fight 2012,” which reportedly drew about 2,000 people to the park at midnight Saturday night, damaging the park’s lily pond, killing several koi fish inside.

An online fundraising page has been created to gather $10,000 in damages done during the event, though it does seem to deflect blame for the damage.

“The organizers specified that no one was to use the pond water, or go into the pond,” the fundraiser’s description reads. “Unfortunately, things got out of control.”

Police told KFMB-TV a pipe in the pond broke at some point in the evening, causing thousands of gallons of water to drain out of the pond. They did not learn about the event or the accompanying damage until Sunday morning, though, because the park was “not monitored on a regular basis.”

The event had been promoted via Facebook, with a public invitation page, and pictures emerged after the event of revelers around the park. As word got out about the incident, the debate over what should happen after police locate the organizers also spread to social media, like the event’s Yelp page.

“Why could this not have taken place at the beach? Lots and lots of water there that no one has to pay for,” one comment read. “No trapped fish trying to not get squished and gasping to breathe. I hope they track down every single person who was there so they can pay for the damages.”

Footage from the party, posted on YouTube by user punchelmet on Aug. 12, can be seen below:

Arturo Garcia
Arturo Garcia
Arturo R. García is the managing editor at Racialicious.com. He is based in San Diego, California and has written for both print and broadcast media, including contributions to GlobalComment.com, The Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt
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