Thousands Pack West Hollywood for Halloween Carnaval

WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 31: A general view of atmosphere at West Hollywood Halloween Carnaval on October 31, 2017 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Barry King/Getty Images)

WEST HOLLYWOOD (CNS) - West Hollywood's answer to the Times Square New Year's Eve bash was held Tuesday as thousands of often-elaborately costumed revelers took to the streets for the annual Halloween Carnaval, billed as the world's largest Halloween party.

In light of the terror attack in New York that killed eight people, sheriff's deputies stepped up patrols Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning, but officials said their plans for keeping revelers safe already took into account previous attacks.

``All of this stuff was taken into consideration,'' Sgt. Shawn Cohen said of planning for the Carnaval.

Still, patrols were beefed up in light of what happened in New York on Tuesday, where a man in a rented van mowed down people on a Manhattan bike path.

The party went on nonetheless along Santa Monica Boulevard between Doheny Drive and La Cienega Boulevard, and as of midnight no violence had been reported.

``I'm amazed each year by the imagination and talent that go into creating elaborate and inventive costumes,'' Mayor John Heilman said. ``The joy of the crowd is palpable and the celebration is a wonderful testament to the city of West Hollywood's creativity.''

The Carnaval began in 1987 and has grown annually, evolving into a Southland and national phenomenon.

City officials reminded attendees that no backpacks, camera cases, tote bags or similar items were permitted at the event. Weapons and drones were prohibited, as was alcohol.

Carnaval-goers were urged to show off their costumes by posting pictures online with the hashtag wehohalloween.

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