Food fight dream coming to life

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In the Oscar-nominated film “Hook,” Peter Banning  jumps onto the dinner table, yelling “Bangerang!” as he throws a fistful of food at the Lost Boys, only to be pelted by food in return.

On Sept. 29, a group of BYU students will host the “Mash Bash,” a Bring-Your-Own-Mashed-Potatoes food fight the friends say will rival the scene displayed in the Robin Williams film.

“We wanted to reenact the scene from the movie ‘Hook,'” said Evan Hughes, a 21-year-old from Rockport, Maine, studying exercise science. “Which is why we’re asking that you come with pre-colored mashed potatoes, just like the colored food in Hook.”

[/media-credit] The hosts of “Mash Bash 2012” show off their multi-colored mashed potato arsenal to be used this weekend.
Dave Barton, one of the creative minds behind the fight, encourages participants to put food coloring in as well as garlic flavoring (an enthusiasm unknown to the other friends, but a recent topic in one of the Facebook videos.) Barton, excited by the “Hook” theme, said he wanted everyone to come dressed as their favorite Lost Boy.

“It’s not a requirement,” Barton said, sitting in the living room laughing with his friends, “but encouraged. Well, OK, not encouraged, but optional … .”

The friends have known each other since freshman year, describing their relationship similar to the bond shared by Tia and Tamara on the show “Sister, Sister.” The friends, known for their spontaneity and humor, were inspired to host the fight after noticing five bags of mashed potatoes Andrew Zobrist, a 22-year-old accounting student, had laying around.

“We thought maybe we could get 20 people there,” Barton said. “But, it ended up steamrolling into this grand event with more than 300 people attending on the Facebook page and getting Moxie Pest Control to sponsor us.”

The friends have generated a lot of traffic for the Facebook page by uploading videos promoting the fight. The first video featured Barton, Zobrist, a Cheez-It box and mashed potatoes. The videos have become more creative, showcasing new uses for mashed potatoes, well-known BYU locations and poking fun at Provo culture.

“We plan on posting a video a day until the fight,” Zobrist said. “We’d love for other people to post their own videos too. Get creative. Show what you can come up with using mashed potatoes.”

Barton and Evans think the draw for the event comes from the fact that it is something different from the usual Provo dance party, dessert party or “nerd” themed events.

“People will want to go to this because it’s never been done on such a large scale before,” Evans said. “Everyone’s always wanted to have a food fight and now we’re giving them the opportunity to do it.”

People planning on going should bring hand sanitizer to use before eating, the boys said. The Mash Bash starts at noon, with other activities including live music, a mashed potato slip n’ slide and mashed potato wrestling. Multi-colored potatoes will be sold at the event for $2 a bag to cover costs, but attendees are encouraged to bring their own.

“We want as many people to come as possible,” Zobrist said. “So, if you don’t have time to make potatoes beforehand, you still have a way to come and be a part of the fight.”

The Mash Bash will be held on Sept. 29 at noon in Rock Canyon Park. For more information, visit the Facebook page “Mash Bash 2012!”

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