West Hollyhood has one of the biggest and baddest Halloween celebrations every year, but sadly, due to COVID-19 restrictions, it is yet another major event that has been cancelled this year. The event draws thousands every year where you can see costumes, tricks, AND treats walking up and down Santa Monica Boulevard.
Los Angeles County currently has a restriction on no public gatherings over 10 people and the city of West Hollywood is reminding Halloweenies that the event will not take place this year and they will “not hesitate to issue a curfew” if overcrowding becomes an issue in order to “avoid the potential for a COVID-19 superspreader event.”
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To try to deter erratic behavior, the city will not be closing Santa Monica Boulevard to on-coming traffic, so remember that if you’re out and about!
West Hollywood Mayor Lindsey Horvath says:
We never come to these decisions lightly. Of course we love to celebrate West Hollywood’s Carnaval every year and welcome people to the boulevard, but we know this year it’s just not safe to do that because of COVID-19.
We won’t have the public safety setups that we normally do, with road blockades and closure redirection, so if people try to [congregate], it’s going to be a real mess. It’s not going to be like years past.
Additionally, the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department will be closely monitoring the use of face coverings and those who refuse to wear a face covering could be cited, according to a press release, up to $300 to be exact!
Sgt. Eric Moyer of the West Hollywood sheriff’s station said:
Based on all the protests that went on in the summer, we just don’t want to be caught with our pants down on this. We’re all getting prepared throughout the county, not just here.
Restaurants and bars that serve food will be open for business, but must adhere to Los Angeles County Public Health protocol for on-site outdoor dining with limited capacity. Establishments that are open for business that do not enforce safety measures could be hit with a citation. To control crowd size and safeguard social distancing, customers are encouraged to use pickup and takeout options. So you can enjoy your saucy meals in your slutty outfits at home!
West Hollywood City Councilman John Duran said to the LA Times:
I don’t know if people realize the significance of the holiday for LGBT people. We play dress-up all the time — we pretend to be straight, we pretend to be average or normal, we pretend to fit in — and Halloween night is one of those nights when we can finally let our hair down and be anything or anyone that we want, and it’s really deeply ingrained in our culture.
I’m going to see masked-up Ruth Bader Ginsburgs, Donald Trumps and Stormy Daniels out on the boulevard so we have to be practical. People are going to dress up, they’re going to celebrate Thanksgiving, they’re going to set up Christmas trees, they’re going to light their Hanukkah candles, and they’re going to want to gather. Let’s start to talk about a mask as being a modern-day version of the condom for the AIDS epidemic. Put on your mask!
Instead of the Halloween extravaganza this year, West Hollywood is urging community members to stay home and celebrate a safe Halloween with activities that prevent the spread of COVID-19. Some suggestions include having online parties, drive-by events, drive-in movies or scare events, festive yard decorations, and pumpkin carving.
Los Angeles Public Health and county officials also recommend skipping trick-or-treating for families.
Will you be celebrating Halloween safely this year? If so, what are your plans?
Source: LA Times