Be careful: Fantasy Fest and Halloween coming up
With Fantasy Fest this week and Halloween coming up next week, the Sheriff’s Office would like to remind people to be extra careful while driving in heavy event traffic. Also, if you plan to attend any parties or other activities, make sure you plan ahead to have a sober driver available if you plan to drink alcohol.
Although most Fantasy Fest activities take place in the city of Key West, the Sheriff’s Office will be helping out with extra security at many city events and will also be performing extra patrols to make sure everyone is safe on our roadways.
Traffic is expected to be especially heavy southbound into the city of Key West Saturday in the late afternoon and then again late in the evening as people travel to and from the Fantasy Fest parade. Sheriff’s Office road patrol and traffic enforcement deputies will all be doing their best to ensure traffic keeps moving, and that no one is driving dangerously.
Next week, Halloween falls on Monday and deputies will be out county-wide to make sure kids who are trick-or-treating are safe. Parents should ensure that small children are accompanied by either older children or responsible adults, that they carry a flashlight if possible and that their costumes have some sort of reflective material to make them visible to drivers.
A Halloween party is always an alternative to trick-or-treating. If you plan to host a party, or attend one the Sheriff’s Office would like to caution: serving alcohol to those under the age of 21 is illegal and you will be arrested if caught doing so. Possessing alcohol when you are under 21 is also illegal and is also an offense you can and will be arrested for.
Many teens think it is fun to throw eggs, shaving cream, toilet paper and other items at cars, homes and other people. Some also like to use spray paint to “tag” property. Our officers will be out on Halloween night performing extra patrols for such activity. This type of activity is criminal mischief and, as such, is against the law. If we catch you, you will be arrested. The only time any of this type of behavior is legal would be as part of an organized, adult supervised activity with everyone involved a willing participant.
Merchants in the Florida Keys are asked to refrain from selling large amounts of shaving cream, spray paint and/or eggs to young people to help us to curtail this destructive behavior.
Special rules for some areas of Marathon:
In Marathon, there will be a few road closures on Halloween night to increase the safety of pedestrians and children Parking will be prohibited on the shoulder of the road and on the bike path which runs parallel with the fence line along Aviation Boulevard in Marathon. Everyone will be asked to park in the designated parking area on airport property.
Those arriving in the area on Halloween evening/night will enter through the airport gate on Aviation Boulevard. Sheriff’s deputies will be located throughout the area to give directions and a deputy will be there directing traffic into the parking area itself.
Two county school buses will be used to shuttle all trick-or-treaters and other visitors from the parking area to the neighborhood where the Halloween event is taking place. Shuttles will run from 6 to 10:30 p.m. Those who choose to walk instead may do so on the bike path.
Traffic through the neighborhood will be limited to those who live in the area and who are able to produce identification showing their place of residence in that area.
Safety is a primary concern for both the Sheriff’s Office and the city of Marathon. Please follow these guidelines and help keep the event safe for everyone involved.