The Sunshine State set another record over the weekend. On Saturday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 23,903 new cases of COVID-19 for Friday. This exceeds the previous day’s record of 22,783 new cases.
The LIV and Story clubs were closed for about a year during the pandemic and reopened in April. Owner David Grutman, the king of South Beach nightlife, who also owns a restaurant and hotel with Pharrell, said: “We’re thrilled, we want to stay open, and we know the only way to do it is is that people get vaccinated, so we want to make it as accessible as possible.
It has partnered with CDR Health, which has administered more than 2 million vaccines since the outbreak, to offer free vaccines outside of clubs during the weekends, with the option of extending it for additional weekends. .
Further north in West Palm Beach, Clematis Social club owner Cleve Mash is waiving gate fees for fully vaccinated partygoers and offering $ 200 bonuses to workers who can prove their immunization status, according to the Palm Beach Post .
The overwhelming majority of COVID-19 patients hospitalized in Florida are not vaccinated. Of the more than 10.5 million fully vaccinated Floridians, about 0.019% are in a Florida hospital with COVID-19, according to the Florida Hospital Association.
Elizabeth Bahamonde, 25, remembers the last time she partied with friends at LIV. It was only a few months before the pandemic and they danced the night away, “shoulder to shoulder” as Latin pop superstar Bad Bunny performed.
“The club scene in Miami is a lifestyle. If you live here, you know that, ”the Uber Eats driver told The Associated Press on Sunday.
Even though it was difficult, she stayed home for most of the pandemic and didn’t start going out again until late 2020, saying she was fed up with the isolation. But as clubs and restaurants in Florida became increasingly crowded and masks and other restrictions were lifted, she stopped clubbing.
She had been on the fence about the vaccine and planned to get it, but had COVID two weeks ago, calling it “the most horrible experience of my life.”
“I wasn’t anti-vax but I was expecting it,” said Bahamonde, who said half of her friends are vaccinated and the other half are not. “As ignorant as it sounds, I had to go through this to want to do it.”
Bahamonde has said she plans to get the vaccine now and thinks it’s cool that LIV is using her influence to promote the vaccine to young club goers, saying her unvaccinated friends are “actually going out more.”
“LIV uses its image and platform to spread this incentive, ‘Hey, it’s cool to party, but it’s also cool to get the shot.’ I think it puts people in a more comfortable situation, ”she said.
“The variant is more virulent,” he said. “I didn’t see the number of young people so hypoxic and sick last year,” he said, noting that many needed extra oxygen.
“And that’s partly because this group of people were not disproportionately vaccinated by choice,” he said.
Florida saw an increase in the seven-day average of new cases to 19,250 as of Friday, from 15,817 a week earlier. The state has counted 616 deaths in a week, bringing the total number of deaths from COVID-19 to 39,695, according to a weekly statistic released Friday night by the Florida Department of Health.
Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has encouraged vaccinations, but has repeatedly stressed that he will not impose statewide mask mandates or business closures, calling such restrictions harmful, destructive and ineffective.