Honolulu Festival canceled over coronavirus concerns

Honolulu Festival canceled over coronavirus concerns
Honolulu festival (Source: Honolulu Festival)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Honolulu Festival has been canceled over coronavirus concerns, organizers said Tuesday.

The 26th annual event was scheduled to take place this Friday through Sunday.

In a press release, officials said they decided to cancel the popular festival in response to recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control, the Japanese government and Hawaii state officials.

Last week, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced plans to cancel, postpone or scale back large cultural or sporting events for the next few weeks.

Hiroyuki “Keith” Kitagawa, president of the Honolulu Festival Foundation said, in a statement, "There are currently no cases of the coronavirus in Hawaii. However, considering the precautions and recommendations being made by government health officials to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, canceling this year’s Honolulu Festival is the responsible action to help protect the public’s safety.”

The three-day festival — which was expected to draw thousands of visitors throughout the Pacific Rim — includes cultural performances, events, a parade and the popular Nagaoka Fireworks Show. Earlier, organizers had canceled their opening reception as well as the fireworks show.

The announcement comes just a day after organizers of another festival in Honolulu — the 13th Festival of the Pacific Arts & Culture — announced it would be postponed due to coronavirus concerns.

This story will be updated.

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