NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- While the New York Yankees look to welcome back fans for Opening Day on April 1 with limited capacity, the stadium will also remain a COVID vaccine site.
In preparation for fans' arrival, the Yankees say they have worked closely with the State of New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City of New York, Major League Baseball and other health and safety experts to utilize the best and most responsible practices in the facility.
The club says they are prioritizing health and safety while adhering to COVID-19 safety guidelines and protocols.
Yankee Stadium will be permitted to operate at 20% capacity to start the season, and guests will be seated in "pods" separated by empty seats.
COVID-related signage will be posted throughout the building, including on hundreds of TVs on all concourse levels. Hand sanitizer dispensers will be located in all publicly trafficked locations.
Officials say Yankee Stadium will continue to operate as a vaccination center for Bronx residents through at least April 30. The site began operation on February 5 and was established through a partnership between New York state, New York City, the New York Yankees, SOMOS Community Care and the New York National Guard.
The vaccination site is open Tuesday and Wednesday from 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. When the season starts, it will be open from 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. on the mornings of night games, and from 8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. on all days when the team is on the road or idle.
The only dates through April 30 when the stadium site will not administer vaccines are those with scheduled home day games for the Yankees (4/1, 3, 4, 17, 18) or NYCFC (4/24). Of special note, the site operated on a 24/7 basis from 3/4-10.
By Opening Day, the Yankees anticipate to have administered more than 80,000 doses of vaccine to more than 52,000 people, including approximately 38,000 people receiving the Pfizer vaccine and approximately 14,000 receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which is the vaccine all new recipients will receive through the end of April.
Pfizer recipients requiring a second dose will continue to receive them at the stadium through mid-April.
As appointments become available (for qualifying Bronx residents only), they may be scheduled by visiting www.somosvaccinations.com.
Yankee officials says they will honor the incredible work done by the vaccination staff at Yankee Stadium and representatives of the various organizations collaborating on the effort will be seated in the Judge's Chambers at Thursday's Opener. In subsequent games, other frontline healthcare heroes will populate the section.
On Opening Day, the Judge's Chambers will feature:
- Robert Bristol, Program Manager, Health and Medical, NYC Office of Emergency Management
- Pam Vittini, SOMOS Director of Operations
- Dr. Ramon Tallaj, SOMOS Chairman
- Katherine Santana, SOMOS nurse
- Judith Schaper, SOMOS nurse
- Matthew Alilionis, Regional Director, NYS Dept of Homeland Security
- Jeremy Shockett, N.Y. State Deputy Secretary for Public Safety
- Sgt. Mousa Aboura, National Guard
- Sgt. Josefry Pimentel, National Guard
- Sgt. Ian Merritt, National Guard (from the Bronx)
Fans should visit www.yankees.com/updates, for all need-to-know information prior to coming to Yankee Stadium, including policies related to entrance requirements (including testing/vaccine verification prior to entry, mask usage and social-distancing guidelines) and permitted activities while at the game.
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