Beaufort hosts tomato fight this weekend

Published Date 6/11/2008: Patrons to the Johns Island Fields Farm tent at the Mount Pleasant farmer's market peruse the locally grown tomatoes.

A tomato costs about $1.50. But for $20, you can buy the right to be pelted with 10,000 pounds of the in-season vegetable.

Beaufort this Saturday is staging its first-ever tomato festival, the centerpiece of which is an "all-out tomato fight." The celebration also includes a 5K run with tomato obstacles; live music; food trucks and a children's area.

According to the Island Packet, which has closely covered the festival's development, the battle tomatoes provided by two local farms are cull tomatoes, meaning they've been deemed unfit for consumption.

"This is a big tomato area, and it's a shame that we don't have a tomato festival," founder Robert Sample told the Beaufort newspaper.

To ensure participants' safety, tomatoes can only be hurled below the waist, and eye protection is mandated. Sunglasses count.

The Tomato Festival at 5 Cane Island Farm Rd. runs from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., with the fight scheduled for 12 noon. For more information, visit