Monday, November 1, 1999

Lahaina mob
has boo-tiful night

More than 20,000 whoop it up
in costume on Front Street
for Halloween

By Gary Kubota


LAHAINA -- More than 20,000 people turned Front Street into a sea of masks and costumes last night as Lahaina town celebrated Halloween.

The Hawaii-style mardi gras continues to attract residents and visitors, with music and a parade of costumes from the merry to the macabre.

"That's one of the reasons why we're here," said Richard Rhineking, a visitor from Seattle.

Lahaina police said there were no major problems arising from the celebration -- the only time a mile-long section of Front Street is closed for a night event.

On the corner of Dickenson and Front streets, Grateful Dead singer Jerry Garcia was alive and talking to the Wizard of Oz's Dorothy.

A man in a yellow submarine and playing Beatles music cruised by a group of surgeons trying to revive a patient on a gurney.

But they ignored another man posing as a dead body who lay on the sidewalk.

People dressed as pineapples bounded down the street, followed by a man holding a birthday cake and others dressed as gifts.

Inside the Wharf Cinema Center, Oahu resident Mark Fisher, wearing a beard and dressed as a nun, won first place in a karaoke costume contest.

Fisher sang soul singer James Brown's signature song, "I feel good."

Fisher said he had heard about the celebration through a friend and decided to visit Lahaina.

"It's great. I love it," he said.

Air Force Sgt. Scott Berge and his wife, Jeri, said they came along with about 100 other people from Hickam Air Force Base.

"What a party! It's awesome," said Jeri Berge.

Scott Berge said he like the diversity of people and costumes and planned to return next year.

On Front Street, Japanese visitors Kengo and Tomoko Murakami wore their wedding outfits to celebrate Halloween.

Kengo Murakami said they were married Saturday on Oahu and decided to visit Maui. Murakami took a videotape of his wife next to other people in costume.

"It is very nice," he said.

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