HONOLULU (KHON2) — Many people had a relaxing Halloween and followed local health guidance by staying at home, but there were several large parties that officials said could lead to a small spike in cases in the next few weeks.
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Honolulu police and the group Hawaii Quarantine Kapu Breakers kept busy across Oahu on Saturday night.
“There were quite a few parties last night. Some of them we shut down before they even started,” explained Hawaii Quarantine Kapu Breakers administrator Angela Keen. “There were some in neighborhoods up on the North Shore that we heard of, and Waikiki was busier than we thought it was going to be. It was quite busy.”
Keen said that her group worked with the Honolulu Police Department to help break up large events.
She said a video of a North Shore block party was the most concerning. It showed over 50 people of all ages without masks.
“It’s great that they were having fun. We just hope that there was no one there who had COVID so we don’t see some spikes in the future,” Keen said.
She said there were reports of people celebrating on the water as well.
“We have a lot of reports of people on boats. That’s one way for them to get away with it. No social distancing, costumes, no social distancing and gathering — quite surprising,” she continued.
She said there was a big party on Hawaii Island as well. She said group members spoke with the people who were throwing the event.
“They told some of our members that they felt that they were being safe because it was outdoors,” she said. “But when you’re constantly promoting these parties and gatherings, that does a disservice because it means that down the road, we’re going to have to shut down again and we really don’t want that.”
For the first time in years, Front Street in Lahaina was open to traffic on Halloween.
Many people there said that the celebrations were under control.
“This is our fifth Halloween at Down the Hatch, and honestly it was like the most stressful one at the beginning because we didn’t know what to expect,” explained Down the Hatch co-owner Javier Barberi. “But as soon as we hit capacity, it was so minor.”
He said it helped to not have people walk around or dance.
“I think everyone played by the rules really well, and we had a lot of security,” he said.
Lieutenant Governor Josh Green said that he was pleased with how the night went but said we can probably expect to see a slight uptick in cases in the next two weeks.
“There were house parties we’ve heard of, but house parties as small gatherings are one heck of a lot better than huge gatherings. So hopefully, we won’t have too much community spread,” Lt. Gov. Green said. “I think it should be okay. We should not see a surge from Halloween based on what I saw last night.”