Steel Trappings

Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival COVID-19

Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival Canceled

April 7, 2020 • Addison ChingFestivals and Conventions

The 2020 Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival has been canceled. The festival was previously scheduled to be held as a part of the 2020 Waikīkī Steel Guitar Week on Friday, July 17, 2020.

The festival cancellation is due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. State and local authorities have issued directives banning assemblies and Hawai‘i residents are now required to stay at home except for essential workers and activities such as grocery shopping, picking up prescriptions, or caring for the elderly. The order is in effect through April 30, 2020, but may be extended depending on the status of the pandemic in Hawai‘i. Currently, Waikīkī Steel Guitar Week is still scheduled to be held pending any governmental directives in place at that time that might affect the event.

Festival organizer Tadashi Arakawa expressed concern about continuing with this year's festival as scheduled. He felt that some potential participants might feel anxious about traveling to Hawai‘i because of the pandemic.

In addition, Japan's prime minister has declared a month-long State of Emergency for Tokyo and six other prefectures because of the coronavirus pandemic. As with similar directives issued worldwide, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe asked people to reduce their contact with others by 70-80%, saying successful social distancing could see infections peak in two weeks. He called on non-essential workers to work from home in the seven affected prefectures of Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama, Chiba, Osaka, Hyogo and Fukuoka.

The 2021 Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival date will be published when it becomes available. Check the festival's website for updated information.

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