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Ocean City officials announced Tuesday that its annual Sunfest will be moved to a different date this year to avoid conflicts with an unofficial car show that the mayor said placed the town “under siege and in danger."

Town officials said Sunfest will be held Oct. 1-4, straying from the 46-year tradition of holding the music and arts festival on the third weekend after Labor Day. The town said the decision stemmed from a combination of 2020 being a leap year and the fact that it would have coincided with an event known as H20i, a gathering of car enthusiasts.

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The gathering, which is not permitted or sanctioned by Ocean City, draws enthusiasts of lowered and modified Volkswagens and Audis, as well as a variety of lowered and otherwise modified vehicles. The event is not affiliated with the H20i organization.

Two years ago, the official H20i car show moved to Atlantic City, New Jersey. But enthusiasts keep coming back to Ocean City by the thousands. And the event has long caused problems with locals.

Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan vowed to end the the unofficial event last year , after participants caused a commotion in the city, zooming down streets and burning rubber. Police said there were several accidents and an unruly crowd threw rocks at officers.

In a statement released Tuesday, the town said having both Sunfest and H20i on the same weekend caused traffic and public safety concerns and also would create a staffing challenge.

“We have a responsibility to preserve our signature event,” Meehan said in the release. “However, our biggest responsibility is the safety of our residents and visitors. Based on public safety and staffing needs, we believe this change is beneficial to all residents and visitors of Ocean City.”

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