Hawaii has temporarily closed a beach at Makena State Park in Maui following several large parties there that included hundreds of mask-less revelers.

The decision came amid a recent spike in the number of coronavirus cases on the Valley Isle.

The state Department of Land and Natural Resources said the parties at Puu Olai beach, the smaller of two beaches at the park, have included nude people dancing in drum circles and illicit substances.

Hawaii has temporarily closed a beach in Maui following large parties with mask-less revelers. Courtesy: DLNR

Social media posts from Sunday showed an estimated 400 people at the beach.

But the state said previous enforcement efforts date back to November.

Officials said the parties may have been linked to previous COVID-19 outbreaks.

“For everyone’s health and safety we cannot continue to tolerate the lack of personal responsibility hundreds of people are demonstrating every Sunday at Puu Olai,” said DLNR Chair Suzanne Case.

“Participants in the Sunday gatherings shoulder full responsibility for this closure. It’s too bad their astounding lack of personal responsibility penalizes everyone else who abides by the rules,” she added.

While the closure was described as temporary, officials did not say when the beach would reopen. Anyone caught in the area during the closure will be cited.

Quality journalism takes time.

A story that takes fives minutes to read often takes days to report.
Quality journalism takes time and resources to produce, but with support from readers like you, Civil Beat can investigate issues and publish stories that are otherwise difficult to fund.
Become a donor and help support Civil Beat’s next investigation.

About the Author