This Won’t Be A Happy New Year in the Conch Republic
Published Dec. 6, 2020
Key West, one of PubClub.com’s Top New Year’s Eve destinations, will have a curfew starting at 10 o’clock on NYE night.
PubClubbers out in the bars, along Duval Street and elsewhere in the city will have to be back in their hotel rooms, apartments or homes by 10:30 p.m. This applies just not on Dec. 31, but on the entire weekend. New Year’s Eve 2020 is on a Thursday.
Key West Mayor Teri Johnston made the announcement on Dec. 4.
Here is the directive:
“Commencing on Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020 at 10 p.m. and terminating on Sunday, Jan. 3, 2021, at 6:00 a.m., a curfew is hereby imposed for the City of Key West, effective from 10 p.m. each night through 6 a.m. the next morning. All non-essential businesses shall close on or before 10 p.m. each night.
“Persons shall be in their residences or lodging establishments no later than 10:30 p.m. each night. During the period of such curfew, no person shall make use of any street or sidewalk for any purpose, except police, fire rescue, first responder, medical, health care, media, and utility repair service personnel.”
It does not point out how this will be enforced, if there are any fines for people out after 10:30 or if they will simply be told to go to their rooms.
Quirky Key West doesn’t have a ball drop like a lot of places for NYE. Instead it has a sushi drop at the Bourbon Street Pub, a pirate wench drop Schooner Wharf Bar and even a high heel drop on Duval Street. Sloppy Joe’s had already canceled its conch shell drop, which is the main party gathering spot at midnight.
But was it the mayor who dropped the ball? Hotel rooms are already booked at close to 90% capacity and does the mayor think people will simply quit partying two hours before the end of a very challenging 2020? No, they will party in their hotel rooms, of course. Likely with strangers as well as friends.
The bar owners, managers and employees will also be missing out on big money from not being open during the biggest party hours of the entire year.
So much for a Happy New Year in the Conch Republic.