Andrew Riis, the 23-year-old Manly resident who was fined for playing music and blowing bubbles on top of his van during lockdown, has started a GO Fund me campaign to raise $3,000. It was originally $11,000 but he revised the figure concerned it would be perceived as a money grab rather than a call for community support.
He was formally issued with his Penalty Infringement Notice (PIN) of $1,000 by local police, for breaking public health orders, earlier in the week. He serenaded the officers with music and bubbles when they served the fine, continuing what he says to be his respectful dealing with police.
“Shortly before police detective arrived, I had an idea.. they are having a hard time just like the rest of us, so it would be great to provide a brief moment of joy while they carried out their duties,” he says, referring to the music and bubbles greeting them on arrival.
The public response to Andrew’s original stunt to play music and blow bubbles along the Beach at Manly has been mixed – some arguing it was irresponsible to draw a crowd during lockdown while others say he was safely spread joy. His actions were called out by the NSW Police Deputy Commissioner as irresponsible during a press conference, and it was claimed he had been issued with a PIN. While the fine had not yet been issued as claimed, it now has been.
Manly Observer will not be covering the issue further but those interested can view his public message below.