Will Washington Square Park Have Early 10 P.M. “Curfew” This Weekend With Police in Riot Gear? No One Knows

Updated — Last Saturday (6/5), the NYPD shut Washington Square Park down early at 10 p.m., removing remaining park goers by mobilizing police in riot gear. Now aware of the enforced early curfew, people pushed back to reclaim this public space. There were reportedly 23 arrests after back-and-forth confrontations by some in the crowd with the police. Can’t New York City, of all places, do better?

Early Curfew Not in Place, No NYPD in Riot Gear on Sunday (6/6)

The following night, Sunday — the curfew is set for Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights — no police in riot gear lined up on Fifth Avenue outside the Arch as they had the night before, no multiple vans and SUVs, and no entry by NYPD as 10 p.m. came and went. People were happy. It became quite the party within the park.

No one knew what this meant. Was the curfew now over? This seemed like a possible, good result and the proper response. But, no.

When asked earlier this week, Mayor de Blasio “said he expects to use the curfew for the popular Greenwich Village space ‘rarely when necessary’ … when asked directly about the upcoming weekend, a spokesman kicked it over to the police’s press shop.” The NYPD “declined to give its plans” and said the curfew will be “reviewed on an ongoing basis.”

That sounds like a terrible idea.

Photos from last Saturday night:

First set, before “curfew”:

One of the very not visible signs noting early closing

Garibaldi with planters to dissuade skateboarders
NW corner closed off
Electronic ‘blink and you miss it’ sign with multiple images by the Arch
NYPD Mobilizing Fifth Avenue
ACLU Protest Monitors on site
NYPD take on the park

The vibe on Sunday, June 6th, the next evening, when it became clear the NYPD were not mobilizing and 10 p.m. curfew would not be enforced at the park:

Update: Friday, June 11th, no early curfew.

See more videos and coverage from Washington Square Park Blog at this post:

NYPD Enforce 10 P.M. “Curfew” at Washington Square Park; People Push Back, Pepper Spray, Riot Gear, Arrests

Recent coverage from other media outlets:

A Curfew and Clashes With Police in Washington Square Park New York Times

As NYPD Sets New Park Curfews, A Battle For Public Space Is Brewing In Manhattan Gothamist

Will Washington Square Park close at 10 p.m. this weekend? ‘Ask police,’ says mayor’s office amNY

Let Washington Square Park Breathe New York Daily News Opinion Piece by Georgia Silvera Seamans

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