Street Performers in Waikiki

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Dec 10th, 2005, 12:29 PM
  #1
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Street Performers in Waikiki

Street performers in Waikiki need help.

In 2000 the City Council of Honolulu put together Ordinance 00-88 that would have banned street performers on Kalakaua Avenue in Waikiki. Along with the ACLU and private attorneys, the bill was soundly defeated in the courts at great cost the city, (est. $250,00). Now, they have resurrected Ordinance 00-88 and with a narrow focus, Bill 71 will try again, to severely restrict street performers in Waikiki.

I'm against Bill 71 therefore, the following will reflect that opinion.

This is not written to cause arguments or to bring up all the pros and cons of street performers. It goes without saying, many here do not like street performers and wish them to be gone. Everyone will have an opinion. My only hope is to search out and inform supporters of street performing.

Citing a study commissioned by the Waikiki Business Improvement District Association and conducted by the University of Hawaii that claims street performers are a danger to pedestrian safety on Kalakaua Avenue in Waikiki, the city council crafted Bill 71 to protect public safety, citing the performers cause congestion and force pedestrian out into the oncoming traffic.

Even thou the council has previously made huge efforts to ban street performers on Kalakaua using the same reasoning as public safety - a reasoning the courts have rejected - and the Honolulu police chief verified there has never been an accident brought on by a street performers presence, the council denies repeatedly that Bill 71 is a thinly veiled proposal that opens the door to the eventual ban on street performances in Waikiki

Others disagree, stating that in addition to severely restricting the times and locations people can performer on Kalakaua Avenue, the bill has taken on the appearance that council members took a walk down Kalakaua one evening and wrote items into the bill that would put some restriction on every single performer on the street.

For example, one part of the bill totally bans toy guns. Even thou toy guns are legal, easily purchase at stores like Wal-Mart in Honolulu and as of December 22, toy guns will be allowed in the cabin of airplanes, toy guns will not be allowed in performances on Kalakaua.

We’ve all seen the ubiquitous Cowboy living statues performing gun spinning to entertain the public. Gun spinning is a sport in the United States and enjoyed by all members of the family. Even so, if bill 71 passes, you’ll be able to walk down Kalakaua carrying a toy gun – and bring one on the airplane - but not watch someone performing with one.

In addition, many say the study is flawed, due to the beginning presumption that people want to get from point A to B as quickly as possible, and listing congested areas where performers are never present. The study sites bottlenecks, but fails to distinguish between areas that are have only 3 feet of pedestrian walking space - due to poor city planning – and are free of street performers

Anyone who has taken a stroll on the north side of Kalakaua during the evening will know that Kalakaua is more of a board walk then a main street to the train station at 5.00 PM.

In Waikiki, there are few places where visitors have chosen to congregate during their evenings. With Kuhio Avenue filled with prostitutes and unsavory characters, along with the mega malls, the north side of Kalakaua seems to be the place to be. The south side is practically void of walker, and you can assume the reason is the lack of entertainment. Regardless, few are worried about how fast they can get down Kalakaua in the evening. Rather, you’ll find people walking back and forth on the north side of Kalakaua several times during the night enjoying the shows.

Many people have weighed in on the merits of Bill 71. Letters from businesses reflected the University of Hawaii study of the dangers the street performers present for public safety. Others are overwhelmingly in support of street performances in Waikiki and have questioned the logic behind allowing prostitutes to roam freely on Kalakaua, often in sight of the Honolulu Police, and allowing the continued violence on Kuhio Avenue, and instead focusing on the yet undeveloped and un-established danger presented by street performers.

Locals have enthusiastically written to the city council, saying how much they appreciate the ambiance and have enjoyed watching the entertainment on Kalakaua Avenue and judging from the huge crowds of visitor with happy faces that have gathered through out the 20 years the street performers have been in Waikiki, we know many here feel the same way. We ask you to write the Honolulu City Council and voice your opposition to Bill 71. Your voice will be heard.

Jon

Honolulu City Council members

Todd K. Apo
808. 547. 7001
[email protected]olulu.gov

Donovan M. Dela Cruz
808. 547. 7002
[email protected]

Barbara Marshall
808. 547. 7003
[email protected]

Charles K. Djou
808. 547. 7004
[email protected]

Ann H. Kobayashi
808. 547. 7005
[email protected]

Rod Tam
808. 547. 7006
[email protected]

Romy M. Cachola
808. 547. 7007
[email protected]

Gary H. Okino
808. 547. 7008
[email protected]

Nestor R. Garcia
808. 547. 7009
[email protected]

A goggle “Waikiki Street performers” search will turn up many links. Below are some other links to sources for the stuff above.

For anyone that would like to review the full history of street performers in Waikiki:
http://communityartsadvocates.org/saawaikiki.html - scroll down a bit

and in the United States, same link as above, scroll down more.

Items Passengers Can and Cannot Carry
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories...MPLATE=DEFAULT


Djou’s sidewalk study bumps into reality
http://poinography.com/index.php?p=1499

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Dec 10th, 2005, 04:06 PM
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Gun spinning is a sport in the United States ???????
There are more people in the United States that are killing people with guns than are spinning guns !!!!
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Dec 10th, 2005, 05:39 PM
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Rusty, are you still around here writing posts off the top of your head?

Remember me? http://www.fodors.com/forums_reg/thr...=scubatv&fid=1

I supported you when others were beating you up.

You know that I put some time into that post, and it breaks my heart that all you got out of it was some quirky remark.

Alas, you are absolutely correct. There are more people killing with guns than gun spinning. But, a quick google will show that gun spinning is quite popular in the states, they even have celebrities.

Of course, I would never post something before I did bit of research or knew what I was talking about, but... well.... THANKS FOR THE TOPPING.

J
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Dec 11th, 2005, 11:11 AM
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^^^
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Dec 12th, 2005, 06:58 AM
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Scubatv, you state that Honolulu City Council wants to ban street perforemers on Kalakaua Ave, but the information at one of the links you provided indicates that it is only being proposed that "Street performers would have to clear out of four busy blocks of Waikiki for three hours each night under a proposal that has gained early approval from members of the City Council". No mention of a total ban on Kalakaua (although I did not read all the linked info). Perhaps you could clarify.

I was not able to find where you had supported me in the past via the link provided.

You are probably not getting many responses to your post becuase the long link in your post causes the "reply box" to be out of site when one tries to reply. I suggest you repost with the long link deleted.
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Dec 12th, 2005, 10:40 AM
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Sure, no problem. What I wrote is still posted above.


1st paragraph,
"Bill 71 will try again, to severely restrict street performers in Waikiki."

Note:
The restricted hours, between 7.00 -10.00 PM, are pretty much the only hours you will ever find people performing on Kalakaua Avenue in Waikiki.


Paragraph 5,
“.... the council denies repeatedly that Bill 71 is a thinly veiled proposal that opens the door to the eventual ban on street performances in Waikiki.”

Paragraph 6,
“Others disagree, in addition to severely restricting the times and locations people can perform on Kalakaua Avenue, the bill has taken on the appearance that council members took a walk down Kalakaua one evening and wrote items into the bill that would put some restriction on every single performer on the street”

Note:
Some would say, it's possible to allowed “something” and then put enough restrictions on what you have allowed, that it would be unfeasible to do



Rusty, If you bring up my previous posts, scroll down a bit to “Honolulu airport shuttles and flights...please help!!!!!!!!!!!”, currently listed as post number 42, you'll find the, “I supported you...” to which I'm referring.

I thank Fodors for the privilege to post about street performers, and although they are not a hot topic here – and rightly so, people generally enjoy street performers very much, some have gone as far to express that joy by posted the performers photos their web site.

Now, we need people to show their “joy” in another way.

Jon



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Dec 12th, 2005, 12:07 PM
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I like the street performers and think they add to strolling Waikiki in the evening.

On the other hand, I do think they block the sidewalks and people often step out into the street to go around the street performers and the crowd standing around watching them. So it does create a somewhat unsafe condition.

I don't support a ban on street performers, nor do I support moving them elsewhere.

I don't have the answers, but I do think the situation needs to be addressed.
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Dec 28th, 2005, 11:24 AM
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Voice your opposition.

Bill 71 is now on Mayor Mufi Hannemann desk.
[email protected]

Bill 71, about street performers, has an agenda other than public safety. Supporters are not accurately reporting what is taking place on the ground and they shape their facts to fit a singular point of view.

The University of Hawaii study, that allegedly describes dangers the street performers pose to public safety, was commission, aka paid for, by the Waikiki Business Improvement District Association, and has yet to be provided to the public, so no one knows what the study concludes or how the conclusions were reached.

Bill 71 is a part of the continuing effort of businesses that put money first, while effectively taking away another free amenity that the people of Oahu and visitors cherish.

A through read off Bill 71, will reveal its true agenda, which is a ban on street performers in Waikiki.

We all know, it's possible to allowed people to do something and then put enough restrictions on what you have allowed, that it's unfeasible to do

The reality is that Kalakaua during the evening is normally free of heavy traffic. People are comfortable, happy and polite because an evening on Kalakaua is more of a stroll on a fascinating boardwalk then a dash to the catch the last bus at 5.00 PM.

Some of the last words councilmember Djou, sponsor of Bill 71, said at the council meeting went something like this; someone will sue us, either for restricting free speech, or for knowing there was a danger on Kalakaua Avenue.

I've yet to hear of a city being sued for having someone pushed into the street, nor in the 20 years street performers have been on Kalakaua has anyone been injured due to street performers, but if Bill 71 does go into effect, Honolulu will have achieve the remarkably distinctive feat of being sued two times in five years for the exact same thing, for again trying to put connected business interest, in the guise of public safety, ahead of free speech in Hawaii.

Jon Mitchell
Copper Cowboy
Waikiki resident and street performer
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Feb 4th, 2012, 11:41 PM
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Hi Jon,

I'm origionally from Asheville, NC but now a resident of the big Island. Asheville streets are super narrow so if we gather a crowd then we are required to simply stop performing until the crowd dissapates and then start afresh when they are gone. The crowd dynamics may not swing that way on Waikiki but that was the compromise we met in Ashevegas.

I'd like to perform on Waikiki. I won't be on Oahu for long periods of time so I wouldn't be a regular force there but I'd like to know some things before I buy a plane ticket to ensure I don't step on toes or set up in a way that rocks the boat. Can you contact me please? "Bloo Guy" on FB. I'd prefer not to put my e-mail on here.
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Feb 5th, 2012, 06:39 AM
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Bloo, scubatv hasn't been on these forums in several years (this post is 7 years old). I'm guessing it is unlikely he will see your message.
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Feb 7th, 2012, 07:06 AM
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I do not like street performs but I know that is how some add to their their income and it takes a lot to live there. However, the performs are generally very tacky. On our last trip, we had a hard time walking down Kalakaua because of the crowds around them. I'm sorry but seeing someone spay painted in silver standing there like a statue is not what I want to see in Hawaii nor do I come to see spinning gun performers if one can call them that. We noticed the same thing happening in our favorite Piazza in Florence on our last visit. Spray painted people, human statues, magicians, do not make for beauty in a beautiful area.
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Feb 7th, 2012, 02:31 PM
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I LOVE street performers, talented or not so much. If you aren't interested you don't have to go out and stroll those particular boulevards (be it Waikiki or Florence).
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