Malibu Bluffs Park Snack Shack approved by City Council

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The Malibu City Council met in-person at the Chambers Monday night and the first item on the agenda was the Malibu Bluffs Snack Shack. Parks and Recreation members and young members of the public spoke, advocating for the Snack Shack and its importance to the community. Photo by Samantha Bravo/TMT.

The Malibu City Council met in-person at the Chambers Monday night and the first item on the agenda was the Malibu Bluffs Snack Shack. Parks and Recreation members and young members of the public spoke, advocating for the Snack Shack and its importance to the community.

Sisters Graceyn, 8, and Immy, 6, Lugo stood in front of the City Council on Monday night to read their self-typed letter to the council, adding how the Snack Shack is their favorite part of the Little League. 

“We would like more food than just candy,” they both said. 

Parks and Recreation Commissioner Alicia Peak and Chair Dane Skophammer have been working on the project since last year. They reminded the council how long the project has been taking and said it needs to be addressed now.

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Parks and Rec Commissioner Alicia Peak, advocate for the Snack Shack project, speaks before the City Council on Monday, March 27. Photo by Samantha Bravo/TMT

“We’ve been talking about this since last June, and we’re still in the exact same place we were last June, so please do something,” Peak said. 

“Our city has a problem, I believe we have a solution, let’s not sit on this any longer than it has already,” Skophammer said. “We can do something now that will impact the children of this community this season, it would show that we care about our sports programs, our children and preserving the legacy set by past generations.”

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Parks and Recreation Chair Dane Skophammer speaks in front of the City Council on Monday, March 27, in support of the Snack Shack at Malibu Bluffs Park. Photo by Samantha Bravo/TMT

On Friday, March 24, Peak created a petition through the MoveOn platform to receive support from the community to ask the council to amend the Local Coastal Plan (LCP) to include a concession stand in the Table of Uses.

“We’re up to almost 450 signatures, it’s just overwhelming the support of this Snack Shack, and what we need,” Peak said. “I grew up here, I’m a third generation Malibu resident, I have wonderful memories of eating burgers at the Snack Shack, my most fond memories. I want that for my children. My children are 6 and 8, [and] if we continue at this speed, they’re lucky that their kids could have a Snack Shack one day. We need to do this now.”

Peak made three requests: immediately remove the facility that currently sits on the park, change the LCP and amend the table of uses to include this concession stand, and allocate $100,000 for the mobile interim food service trailer.

“I believe in this town, I love this town, I chose to raise my family here because of the beautiful community and I think tonight is the night where we can make big changes,” Peak said. 

At the Feb. 27 regular meeting, the council requested options for replacement of the Snack Shack at Malibu Bluffs Park, including temporary solutions and options for upgrades or replacement.

The Snack Shack has been located between the ballfields and parallel to Winter Mesa Drive since the city gained control of the park in 2006. As part of the approval for the ballfields, Coastal Development Permit No. 5-82-780A2 issued by the California Coastal Commission included an approval for a concession stand. 

According to the report, the permit for the concession stand did not include a connection to the previously existing onsite wastewater treatment system or water service. The existing water connection appears to have been completed without the benefit of a permit. The concession stand consists of a metal shipping container with a built-in service window and a covered patio.

From 2006 to 2018, the city allowed Malibu Little League (MLL) to use the facility as a concession stand without obtaining the required permits through the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (DPH) to cook onsite and serve food to league participants. MLL served food and refreshments on game days, such as hot dogs, hamburgers, popcorn, pizza, and prepackaged snacks. Following the Woolsey Fire in 2018, the Snack Shack was closed for more than a year, and that closure left the structure unfit for food service. 

Staff discussed several options for upgrading or replacing the Snack Shack after receiving feedback from the Parks and Recreation Commission, American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO), and MLL.

The three known options for hot food service at Malibu Bluffs Park, included a non-permanent concession stand, a temporary food trailer, or food trucks.

Council reviewed the options and motioned to interpret a code to direct the staff to start the permitting process. 

“This is a natural part of a recreation facility especially for a city and its ballparks,” Mayor Bruce Silverstein said. “And I believe that we have the ability to tell the staff —perhaps not right now, but two weeks from now — go ahead and construct our LCP that way, we’ll go ahead and process an amendment that will clarify the current language persistent to our precipitation … I think that’s a fair interpretation.” 

Council addressed the funding needed to move forward and passed the motion 5-0.

The council received a presentation on 2022 Environmental Programs Accomplishments from Environmental and Sustainability Director Yolonda Bundy.

The Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff’s Sgt. Chris Soderlund attended the meeting, provided an update from the sheriff’s station, and announced that he will be the city’s new liaison. Soderlund has been a part of the Sheriff’s Department for 15 years, has been a patrol sergeant, beach team sergeant, and in various departments in the station.

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Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff’s Sgt. Chris Soderlund announces he will be the city’s new liaison. Photo by Samantha Bravo/TMT.

“The captain wanted me to reiterate the Sheriff’s Department’s commitment to public safety, especially with schools,” Soderlund said. “We have our own sergeant who’s assigned full-time to schools as well as three deputies, to that extent they have gone to all the schools in the district and have done safety assessments on campus and their safety protocol as well as redesigned the school response safety program to those schools.”

The meeting adjourned in memory of John Wall, The Rev. Paul Robert Elder, the six victims of the Nashville school shooting, and Rick Hodgson.

“Rick Hodgson was a terrific advocate for environmental security, taking care of the beaches in Point Dume, Little Dume, and Big Dume, [and] an advocate for the surf. He surfed his whole life,” Former two-time Mayor Jefferson “Zuma Jay” Wagner said.

The children victims of the Nashville school shooting were Hallie Scruggs, William Kinney, and Evelyn Dieckhaus, all 9 years old. The adults killed were 61-year-old Mike Hill, 61-year-old Cynthia Peak and 60-year-old Katherine Koonce.

The next City Council meeting is scheduled for April 10 at the Council Chambers.