Yankees and Mets opening at full capacity for vaccinated fans, will offer vaccines at games

Posted On Wed, May 5, 2021 By

Posted On Wed, May 5, 2021 By In Policy

Photo by Matt Boulton via Wikimedia Commons

Are you a baseball fan who’s still not vaccinated? Starting May 19, you can attend a game, get a free ticket, AND receive the Covid vaccine. In a press conference today, Governor Cuomo was joined by Yankees President Randy Levine and Mets President Sandy Alderson to announce the new initiative. He also announced that starting May 19, both New York City baseball stadiums will be able to increase capacity to 100 percent for vaccinated people and 33 percent with six-foot distancing for unvaccinated people. There will be two separate seating sections, both of which will require fans to wear masks.

Earlier this week, the governor announced a near-full reopening of New York on May 19. On this date, restaurants, stores, gyms, salons, amusement parks, and offices can reopen at 100 percent capacity for the first time in 14 months. Two days prior, the subway will resume 24/7 service. As we explained, “The six-foot social distancing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will remain in effect at these places, which could still limit capacity depending on the space available.”

Professional sports leagues that play in large outdoor stadiums in New York were able to reopen at 20 percent capacity on April 1. Under the new rules, fans that can show proof of being fully vaccinated for two weeks, as well as their children under 16, will be able to sit in sections of the ballpark with no social distancing. Six feet of space will still be maintained in the sections for unvaccinated attendees.

For those looking to get a vaccine at the game, the governor recommends coming early to receive the one-dose Johnson & Johnson shot, which is being given through a partnership with the New York State Department of Health. To incentivize getting vaccinated, those who take advantage of this program will also receive a free ticket voucher.

The Yankees will give vouchers to the first 1,000 fans who receive their vaccine on each full day of vaccination operations and to the first 700 fans on each half-day of vaccination operations from May 7 through June 6. The Mets will give vouchers to the first 250 fans who receive their COVID-19 vaccine at Citi Field on the day of each Mets home game scheduled from May 24 through June 17. In both cases, the vouchers can be redeemed for two seats to select 2021 or 2022 regular-season home games.

The capacity limits will apply to all large-scale outdoor venues statewide–outdoor sports, performing arts and live entertainment, and horse and auto racing–that can provide separate fully vaccinated fan sections. Proof of immunization can be provided through paper form, digital application, or the state’s Excelsior Pass.

By June 19, New York will begin to pilot reduced social distancing at large-scale indoor event venues in assigned, seated sections that are designated solely for fully vaccinated individuals.

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