NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced more events celebrating New York City’s progress, but they’re only for those who are vaccinated.
The iconic Apollo Theater will host what the mayor calls an extravaganza — a concert next week with numerous acts as the city builds out its Homecoming Week celebrations. Tickets are free, and they’re for vaccinated people only.READ MORE: COVID Vaccine Mandate For New York City Teachers To Take Effect After Federal Appeals Court Lifts Temporary Ban
New York City’s celebration of Homecoming Concerts continued in Brooklyn on Thursday.
“Yeah, first big event since restrictions started getting lifted,” concert-goer Jacob Cross said.
“With the uptick in the Delta variant, I think that, like, it’s a concern that you have to manage as best you can,” concert-goer Sedale Ziegler said.
Watch Alice Gainer’s report —
“I appreciate them having the concert. I can’t imagine that there’ll be social distancing,” Forest Hills resident Suzanne Carter told CBS2’s Jessica Layton.
Carter can’t risk the possibility of a breakthrough infection. A cancer survivor, she was a walk-in at Walgreens for her booster this week.
It’s expected the general population will start getting third doses in September. In the meantime, after watching her mom die of COVID, she’s disappointed in those who have yet to get their first.
“Some people are careless or thoughtless,” Carter said. “People think it won’t happen to them until it does.”
So far, 75% of all adults in New York City have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 56% of 12- to 17-year-olds in the city have received at least one dose.
Over 80,000 have received that $100 incentive to get vaccinated.
The city is now calling on PTAs to help and say they’ll get $100 for every student and family member they sign up.
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Earlier this week, indoor businesses like gyms, bars and restaurants started checking customers’ proof of vaccination status.
With the rise of fake vaccine cards, CBS2’s Alice Gainer asked the mayor what the city is doing to help workers spot a fake.
“If you think, ‘Oh, I’m gonna be cute and take a vaccination card and alter it’ and then you go and you get in some place, you’ve just shown that you did an illegal act with serious, serious penalties, so my message to everyone is don’t even think about that,” de Blasio said. “We definitely will provide training … Definitely a lot of dialogue with restaurants, bars, theaters, et cetera.”
Meanwhile, two large city parades have just pulled the plug on marching this year.READ MORE: Parents Of Immunocompromised Girl Say Long Island School District Refused Requests For Adequate Remote Option
The West Indian Day Parade in Brooklyn will not be held. Instead, organizers say small in-person and virtual events will take place.
The Coney Island Mermaid Parade has also been canceled due to COVID concerns.
Over in New Jersey, the marathon and half-marathon set for this fall were canceled by the city of Long Branch.
All eyes are now looking toward the New York City Marathon in November and other races.
“I think everyone is still excited about it. I don’t think it’s gonna stop people from training,” one person said.
“I’m running the Hartford marathon in October, so I’m just fingers crossed that that will happen,” runner Jordan McMeans said.
The New York Road Runners says it’s still on and in a statement told CBS2 in part, “We will continue to work closely in coordination with the CDC, the New York State Department of Health, and the New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene, and under the guidance of medical and public health experts.”
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But some are confused as to why some large outdoor events can be held and not others.
“Everybody is not on the same page, and that’s one of the biggest problems with society, the biggest problem of this pandemic,” said Javier Andino.
Doctors say these concerts where people have to show proof of vaccination are safer than parades where all the public is invited, but there are still risks to both.
“You’re in a lower risk community just by creating the ability to say you can only go to the concert if you’re vaccinated, whereas something like a parade, which goes on on public streets, you have no way of controlling your crowd and therefore, you are going to have vaccinated mixing with unvaccinated people,” said Dr. Eric Cioe-Peña, director of global health at Northwell Health.
Though the risk outdoors is low, he says, “When you get to a certain density of people, you are going to see transmission, especially if people aren’t wearing face masks.”
Meanwhile, in Connecticut, Gov. Ned Lamont has issued a new back-to-school rule for all K-12 teachers and staff.
“It’s a vaccine mandate. It becomes effective on September 27th,” he said. “If you’re not, you know, confident yet, you can test out.”
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy is expected to announce a similar plan soon.MORE NEWS: New York City's Vaccine Mandate Could Impact Nets Season, As Irving Reportedly Not Getting Shot
CBS2’s Jessica Layton contributed to this report.