As Chief of Police, it is my top priority to ensure that the citizens of Mobile are safe during any approved Mardi Gras gathering. The 2021 Mardi Gras season is definitely different than any other. The City of Mobile has not permitted any parades.
Every Mardi Gras, I encourage our revelers to have fun and enjoy themselves but at the same time be considerate of others. Refrain from participating in situations that may turn into disorder or violence. It is not the goal of the Mobile Police Department to make arrests during Mardi Gras but it is our job to maintain peace. There will be an increased police presence throughout the downtown area.
Equally important, citizens planning to hang out downtown must follow the guidance of the statewide COVID-19 health order. That means wear a mask and maintain proper social distancing. If anyone needs a mask, our officers will be able to provide one. I am expecting voluntary compliance from everyone.
Unlike the mayor of New Orleans, Mayor Stimpson does not have authority to close restaurant and bars in the downtown area. That authority falls under the Mobile County Health Department, which according to the current state health order, bars and restaurants can remain open.
In anticipation of large crowds, the City of Mobile has taken a proactive approach to plan for the safest gathering possible in the downtown area where everyone is required to adhere to the established health order guidelines of wearing masks and social distancing.