HONOLULU (KITV4) -- All capacity restrictions for both indoor and outdoor events on Oahu will be removed beginning on Dec. 1, 2021, Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi announced Tuesday.
The mayor also announced that contact tracing and 6-foot distancing requirements in restaurants will also go away on that day. Masking will still be required at all events, Blangiardi said.
"We're here now at a place in time where everything about this disease now we're on top of from vaccinations to hospitalizations to even our case counts are down," he said. "We've gone through a lot this past year, it's time to celebrate."
In addition to dropping capacity restrictions, Blangiardi also said the city and county will now allow people to show proof of a negative COVID test to attend events. Currently, only vaccinated people can attend large events such as concerts and football games.
"I think it's a good thing because a lot of the friends or family those who are a lot more older, maybe have a health condition, so now we can safely gather without being really bothered by the government," said Aiea resident Micah Apeles.
Food and drink can again be served at events, too.
Gyms can operate at full capacity again, provided all patrons wear masks.
"Our island is only so small and wherever you go, it's always crowded. So I hope that COVID is under its numbers and that the locals can enjoy with their families and come together and be at ease and still be safe but enjoy one another's company because family is everything," said Kaneohe resident Mapuana Kahanu. "I mean, you know, tomorrow's never promised."
The Oahu Safe Access Response Plan will continue. A testing component will be added to the program, so that people who aren't vaccinated can now be tested weekly to meet the requirement.
However, businesses not serving food or drinks are no longer required to follow the Safe Access Oahu rules.
"Let's hope that it works out fine," Kahanu said. "And we don't see or hear of the numbers going up anytime soon after the holidays, especially when everybody congregates."