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Waikiki Sidewalk Performers Controversy

Council Bill 71 introduced by Councilman Charles Djou would restrict street performances on public sidewalks in Waikiki from 7 to 10 pm nightly along Kalakaua Avenue between Lewers Street ande Uluniu Avenue.

The purpose of the bill is to address pedestrian safety concerns on the most congested sidewalk in the state of Hawaii. Now pedestrians are being forced to step into the street.

Performers are: Tin Man, Gold Man, Clay Man, balloon artists

Number of sidewalk performers in Waikiki is increasing

Musicians, artisans, mimes are causing sidewalks to be congested with bystanders making it difficult for people walking by, and especially people in wheelchairs.

Large groups of break dancers in front of the Duty Free Store on kalakaua Avenue draw large crowds.

Sidewalks should be sed for the continuous movement of pedestrian traffic, not as a place to solicit money for sidewalk peformances and displays of crafts.

The performers are illegal business opoerators using the sidewalk to make money in the name of free speech. The people who sell hair braids, fake tattoos, massages, sketches, and fortunates are doing it to make money, and unlike legitimate business owners they pay no taxes or fees, they don't need health department clearances, and they don't pay rent. Waikiki's legitimate business are being forced to complete unfairly with street performers setting up shop on local sidewalks. ACLU argues that civil liberties are being violated by restricting the freedom of speech of street performers. What about the rights of people with disabilities?

Street performers should not be lumped into the same category as illegal street vendors. There is a difference between selling jewelry on the sidewalk and playing the ukulele. And tourists enjoy the street performers. Many local musicians got their start on the sidewalks of Waikiki.

Let's remove the hookers, pimps, and drug addicts first. Where are the city's priorities?

2005 Dec 15: ACLU Challenges Council Vote on Street Performers
2005 Nov 29: Street Artists Law Must Be Narrowly Tailored
2005 Nov 28: Bill May Curb Waikiki Street Performers
2001 Dec: Waikiki Sidewalk Shows Can Continue Judge Rules
2001 Mar: Police Sweeping Vendors Off Waikiki Streets

See also:
- Shows in Waikiki
- Other Activities on Oahu Attractions on Oahu

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