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Fun California City: No Cross-Dressing, No Pinball, No Anything-Athons

Just when I was planning to hold the First Annual Cross-Dressing, Pinball Marathon in Big Bear, California, I came across three major legal hurdles on the books of Big Bear.

No person over the age of sixteen years shall by costume, makeup or disguise, impersonate a person of the opposite sex on or in any public street, sidewalk, park or place, except when such costume, makeup or disguise is worn or assumed in participation of some public celebration, holiday, parade or event.

Why oh why would a law like this be necessary? Was there a slate of cross-dressers who nearly took over Big Bear Lake? The good folk of the city must head for the hills on Halloween and International Crossdressers Day (It’s January 30th, according to Laura Amato.)

Pinball? In this fair city,

It is unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to keep, maintain, possess or have under control in any place whatever, either as owner, lessee …, any table game or device commonly known as a ‘pinball machine’ … or similar device by whatever name known, the operation, use or play of which is controlled by placing any coin, plate, disk, key or other device, or by the payment of any fee.

And if you dare to defy this ban on the devil’s diversion device, the machine will be declared a “nuisance,” and “shall be destroyed with its contents by the sheriff…” Of course, “If the machine contains money, such money shall be deposited in the city general fund.”

And endurance contests? Forget about it.

It is unlawful for any person, firm, corporation or association of persons to conduct, carry on, operate or cause or permit to be conducted, carried on or operated, or for any person to participated in any public marathon dance, walkathon, endurathon, speedathon or any such public human endurance dancing or walking contest or exhibition, within the city, outside of municipal operations.

Should you think about flouting this law, a conviction is punishable by imprisonment of up to six months in the county jail. Legend has it that one man convicted under this law protested by staging a dance-in-place-in-your-cell-athon. He was charged with another violation, the cycle continued, and he remains in jail to this day. Click here to see all three laws.

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