Mardi Gras in Chinatown doesn't get warm welcome from all - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Mardi Gras in Chinatown doesn't get warm welcome from all

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Call it Fat Tuesday, Malasada Day or Mardi Gras, it's a time for celebration. Yet, it isn’t getting a warm welcome from all.


"We really want to encourage the bar owners and the people to watch and not over service these people...once they are out of their establishment they become a community problem," President of Chinatown Business and Community Association Chu Lan Shubert-Kwock said.

Shubert-Kwock said these annual celebrations do more bad than good. She said finding parking is a nightmare these nights, the noise is unbearable, and community members are left cleaning up the mess the next morning.

But the Co-Director of the event and bar owners say they've cleaned it up a lot lately. For instance, they took it off of the streets and transitioned it into a club crawl.

"Fantastic Fat Tuesday in store for everybody, lots and lots of different entertainment, all kinds of great food, fantastic cocktails, all here in Chinatown," said the Co-Director of Mardi Gras Carnaval Honolulu.


"Anything that gets people down here for positive interaction and celebration and gets the streets a little bit more lively for small businesses, it's always a God sent," said Nicole Reid, co-owner of Manifest.


Two-thousand people are expected to celebrate for Mardi Gras in Chinatown Tuesday night. Both Tarone and Reid say they realize the liability that comes with it.


"Frankly we've never had an incident. All the years, this is my ninth incident, we've never had one fight, we've never had one arrest," Tarone said.


"All of us carry big insurance policies that seek to protect us but also our patrons. So having people inside our establishments allows us to monitor what they're drinking and how frequently they are drinking…we very much try to make sure that they're not drunk in here. So if they're not drunk in here, when they leave, they're not drunk outside," said Reid. 

Tarone said they are already planning on next year’s Mardi Gras celebration that will include a parade.

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