KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) — The city of Key West is scaling back its normal New Year’s Eve celebrations following recent surges in the spread of coronavirus.
Key West Mayor Teri Johnston signed an emergency order Friday that sets an island-wide curfew from 10 p.m. to 6 p.m., running Thursday, Dec. 31, through Sunday, Jan. 3. The curfew does not apply to unincorporated Monroe County, which includes the remainder of the Florida Keys, said county mayor Michelle Coldiron.
When the curfew takes effect, all non-essential businesses will be required to close by 10 p.m. Officials said the emergency directive was enacted to lessen the chance of a potential public health emergency brought on by holiday crowds that typically fill the city’s downtown areas. Duval Street typically attracts tens of thousands to celebrate the New Year and watch a giant red shoe with the drag queen inside drop at midnight.
Health officials continue to stress that residents and visitors should wear facial coverings, which are mandatory in the Keys, practice social distancing and wash hands frequently.
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