HOUSTON – State and local leaders, along with health care workers, will gather Sunday to condemn and demand a “Mask Off” party at a local nightclub located on Washington Avenue be canceled.
“Having a mask off party in the middle of a city that has every potential variant of the COVID disease spreading is not only irresponsible but deadly,” said State Rep. Ann Johnson of the Texas House District 134, which includes parts of west Houston, West University and Bellaire.
The event was promoted by Concrete Cowboy and scheduled for Wednesday, the first day Gov. Greg Abbott’s order goes into effect lifting public health measures.
“Let me just encourage people to kind of slow down. Be patient a little bit longer. Let’s make sure we get the vaccines in people’s arms before we open the gates and start acting as if everything is fine,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner.
The popular nightclub has since deleted the flier but like many bars plans to remain open.
Patrons and folks who lived near the area were divided on the issue.
“For an establishment, I think to host a party and advertise it publicly is a slap in the face to health care workers who are on the front lines watching and seeing death every single day,” said Brittany Vasquez.
Max Levy said he wouldn’t be attending but believed the nightclub had a right to do what they wanted.
“I do believe it’s the personal businesses right to decide for themselves what dress code they want to enforce whether that’s a mask or no mask,” Levy said. “I think at the same time it’s your right to stay home or shelter in place.”
Doctor Joseph Varon the Chief of Staff at United Memorial Medical Center also weighed in. He said he understands COVID fatigue is real but believes we have come too far not to be responsible.
“You want to open your business you want to open your store open the store I have no problem with that what I have a problem is some using the mask others not using the mask and like I told you for this to work we both have to wear it,” said Varon.