Mayor Bill de Blasio invited unvaccinated New Yorkers on Monday to come on down, get a shot and a chance to win big prizes in what some might call the city’s version of “The Price is Right” (for a COVID-19 vaccine).
De Blasio unveiled the “New York City vaccine contest,” the administration’s latest effort at encouraging as many New Yorkers as possible to roll up their sleeves and get the potentially life-saving and pandemic-ending inoculation.
With more than 4 million New Yorkers already fully vaccinated — roughly half the five boroughs’ population — the race is on to get the remaining eligible residents to do the same. All kinds of incentive program have been announced in recent weeks giving vaccine recipients the opportunity to enjoy free museum trips, food and even a chance to win cold, hard cash.
The New York City vaccine contest, de Blasio said, offers those who get the shot between now and the beginning of July weekly chances to win all kinds of goodies — including a staycation package for a night at “one of our great hotels here in the city — and enjoy some other great amenities and entertainment,” according to the mayor. Tickets to Broadway shows will also be up for grabs.
Every week, the city will draw a number of vaccine recipients as winners, then offer a new slate of prizes.
This week, the city’s giving away 10 one-year passes to Crunch Fitness, followed by 50 three-day passes to the Governor’s Ball music festival at Citi Field in September.
“For all you Megan Thee Stallion fans, here’s your opportunity. Three-day passes to the Governor’s Ball,” de Blasio said. “Are you saying only one is available? No. I’m saying 50 are available — 50 three-day passes to the Governor’s Ball. So, amazing acts — get vaccinated, go to the Governor’s Ball, couldn’t be simpler than that.”
Any unvaccinated New Yorker 18 years of age or older can sign up for the vaccine contest simply by booking their COVID-19 vaccine appointment on the city’s online hub, vaccinefinder.nyc.gov, and then following the instructions in a follow-up email to register with the Vax4NYC incentive portal.
New Yorkers can also find an array of available vaccine benefits to them on vaccinefinder.nyc.gov/benefits.
Also on Monday, the state court system returned to full in-person business, including within the five boroughs. De Blasio, who stressed the need of having courts “running full bore, full steam ahead so that we can deal with the whole criminal justice system working again,” announced the city dispatched pop-up vaccine operations outside Lou Gehrig Plaza in the Bronx, Queens Borough Hall and the Staten Island Courthouse in order to vaccinate eligible court staff.
“We’re going to support this as part of our Safe Summer New York City plan with a full whole effort to make sure that anyone who needs a vaccination who is part of the court system gets it,” the mayor said. “Every piece affects everything else, so getting folks vaccinated, work in the court system, getting the court system up and running fully is key to making New York City safe this summer, is key to addressing gun violence.”