Dodgers Offer Special Area To Fully Vaccinated Fans For Game With Padres
RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:
There's nothing like baseball on a spring day, the smell of the grass, the Cracker Jacks and your crumpled vaccine card in your pocket.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
VIN SCULLY: It's time for Dodger baseball.
MARTIN: Vin Scully won't be there. He's retired. But this Saturday, the LA Dodgers are opening up two special sections of seats just for those who've been fully vaccinated. Jorge Castillo covers the Dodgers for the LA Times.
JORGE CASTILLO: You need to have proof of a vaccination if you're over the age of 15, and you'll sit there with your mask on. They're asking you to keep your mask on unless you're drinking or eating. But you'll be sitting there next to somebody else, a random person you don't know. And that, to a lot of people I know in the last year-plus, is really strange.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
That's right. No social distancing in this section. You have the privilege to be crowded practically on top of other people. Malti Sharma (ph) got herself one of the pricey tickets.
MALTI SHARMA: I'm fully vaccinated, so - and I'll wear my mask and I'll take precautions. There is always that little concern because you are taking a slight risk.
INSKEEP: But she thinks the risk is worth it for the Dodgers.
SHARMA: It's been so long and I miss going to Dodgers game. I just miss being there. I mean, I've been watching it on TV, but it's not the same thing.
MARTIN: The NBA's Miami Heat recently ended their vaccinated-only sections, calling it an operational challenge to require fans to produce their vaccine paperwork. They'd also been using COVID detecting dogs in the stands. Yeah, dogs that actually sniff around and detect COVID, which definitely sounds like an operational challenge. Here's hoping the Dodgers' experiment will work out better and they'll be able to open up the ballparks and start to bring back one of the classic joys of spring. Play ball.
(SOUNDBITE OF EDDIE LAYTON'S "TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALL GAME") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.