With the 2021-22 NHL Season right around the corner, the Nashville Predators are the latest team to introduce COVID-19 protocols for all who wish to attend home games at Bridgestone Arena in downtown Nashville
According to a press release, the Predators will be requiring all fans to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative test at each event, making them the 14th NHL team to introduce such policies. Additionally, all children 12 and under who aren't able to be vaccinated will be required to wear a mask or provide proof of a negative test within 72 hours of the event they plan on attending.
"Throughout the pandemic we have been consistent in stating that the health and wellness of all arena guests, Predators fans, our employees, players and performers is our number one priority," said Sean Henry, President and CEO of Bridgestone Arena and the Nashville Predators. "Just two months ago, we believed that we were returning to a sense of normalcy, but unfortunately, with the impact of the delta variant, that has not been the case. We are united with health care professionals in our belief that the only way to end this pandemic is to get more people vaccinated.
"To that end, we want to do our part with these policies to make sure that our game and event attendees are as safe as possible and, at the same time, we will use our public platform to amplify the message of the importance of vaccines in hopes of encouraging more people to get vaccinated."
The Predators, in partnership with the Metro Public Health Department, will be offering free COVID-19 vaccinations at all events.
"The Metro Public Health Department appreciates Bridgestone Arena consulting with us to develop their enhanced COVID Entrance Protocol," said Hugh Atkins, Director, Bureau of Environmental Health Services. "Bridgestone Arena's protocol not only helps protect event attendees, but also encourages vaccination, which is our best tool for ending the COVID-19 pandemic."
"On behalf of all or our health care workers and staff battling this pandemic every hour of every day, I'd like to thank our partners at Bridgestone Arena for having the courage to step forward like this," said Dr. C. Wright Pinson, Deputy CEO and Chief Health System Officer at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. "We all recognize that the only way to stem the COVID-19 pandemic in middle Tennessee and across the country is to increase vaccination levels and we salute our local leaders, like those at Bridgestone Arena and the Predators for doing their part."