Since local governments are cracking down on illegal shows with no social distancing or masks, the owners of Liberty Belle Cruise vessel in New York, identified as Ronny Vargas and Alex Suazo, and its captain were arrested after docking Saturday night at Pier 36 in Lower Manhattan.
The four-story boat can hold up to 600 people, though it’s unclear how many were onboard during the event.
An post on the company’s website dated March 16 said it has “ceased operations until further notice.” Who exactly authorized the party is still under investigation.
Gale Brewer, borough president of Manhattan, reportedly alerted state and local authorities about the party after seeing the image.
“I want the business in New York to do well,” said Brewer, the Manhattan borough president, told the New York Times. “But you have to follow the rules in terms of safety and health.”
So a packed Liberty Belle party boat just departed from Pier 36 on the LES waterfront with no apparent social distancing or mask requirement. Who has jurisdiction over these floating nightclubs? @galeabrewer @CM_MargaretChin @yuhline @BrianKavanaghNY @NYPD7Pct pic.twitter.com/DVWXB3XrDz
— twobridgestower (@twobridgestower) August 2, 2020
In another part of the city, reports local CBS New York affiliate, “a new video shows what appears to be a party under the Kosciuszko Bridge in Brooklyn. The party took place Saturday night, lasting into early Sunday morning, according to the New York Post.
“In video posted to Snapchat, hundreds of people can be seen dancing to a DJ. Some wore masks, but there appeared to be little social distancing.”
According to Gothamist, the event was organized by a group called Renegade, which previously threw another rave at the same location on July 4th (billed as Black Lives Matter party). Organizers for the event acknowledged to the publication that this weekend’s party got out of hand, but also defended the intentions behind it.
“If you think people aren’t going to gather, you’re a fool—there’s no stopping that,” said one of the organizers, a South Brooklyn native who asked to be anonymous so the blowback from the event “doesn’t affect his day-to-day life.”
“The event got out of control because people wanted to come, people wanted to be out. People have been cooped up for so long. The pressure is building, and people need a release. It’s already happening. We can do it more safely, or we can pretend it isn’t happening.”
The common response from those in favor of these events is, like the organizer said, “If you think people aren’t going to gather, you’re a fool—there’s no stopping that.” The issue is that EDM events seem to be the prevailing genre thwarting these rules and that’s horrible for public perception. In order for events to return safely and soon, we need the public on our side. The more these events occur and gain national media attention, the longer it will take for the powers that be to fully sanction their return at a legal level.
Please do not attend these events, and if you see them being organized, report them. The underground has a time and place, and it is not during a global pandemic.