Police: Show Your Face At Carnival

Police are asking that St. Thomas Carnival revelers not wear full face masks unless actively participating in a parade troupe.

Full face coverings will not be allowed at St. Thomas Carnival unless while participating in a parade troupe. (Photo by Mat Probasco)

People are allowed to wear surgical masks or other COVID-19 protections, Virgin Islands Police Department officials said Wednesday. People in troupes where full-face coverings are part of their costumes will be allowed to wear their masks while in the parade with their troupes. But face coverings that conceal a person’s identity will not be allowed.

The need for a policy change arose during St. Croix’s Festival, police said. During J’ouvert and other events, several people wore ski masks and full-face covering masks, raising security concerns.

Police said the rule was and is a precautionary measure and not based on any specific threat.

People wearing a full-face covering or ski mask will be asked to remove it, police said. Anyone who refuses to comply will not be able to participate in any Carnival event while wearing a mask.

The 2023 St. Thomas Carnival — the first full celebration since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic — is scheduled to kick off on April 23 and run through April 30, according to the V.I. Tourism Department.