HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Starting this week, concert-goers will have to show proof of vaccination, or a negative COVID-19 test, to attend concerts at the Midflorida Credit Union Amphitheater.
“We’re committed to doing everything we can to ensure we can continue bringing amazing live concerts to fans. As a reminder, starting Oct. 4, prior to entry into Midflorida Credit union Amphitheatre, all shows will require attendees to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours of the event or full COVID-19 vaccination (at least two weeks after final dose). Proof must be a printed copy of a negative test result or vaccination or the original vaccination card,” the venue posted on its Facebook page.
A concert for the rapper NF will be held on Tuesday night as the first event fans will experience the new rule.
One concert-goer told News Channel 8 he found out about the change last minute.
“We got an email last night telling us last minute we needed a test to be able to get into the Amphitheater,” said River Burbage who purchased tickets for the NF concert Tuesday.
“We struggled all night to find a place and we finally found a place this morning and had to pay to get rapid tests,” said Burbage.
The venue posted on Facebook Tuesday that a limited number of tests would be available at the venue for the NF show.
“For $39.99, you can sign up to receive a Rapid Covid Antigen test onsite. Simply schedule your 15-minute rapid antigen test, show up to the venue at your requested time, and proceed to the designated testing area. Your confidential results will be uploaded to your phone so you can enter the gates with proof of a negative test!” according to the post.
“I think when you have a large volume of people, particularly Florida, you know, with all a lot of people coming from different places, I think it’s a good measure to take,” said Kelly Freeman, who supports the new rule.
“We think we’re coming out of the woods. The rates are way down, deaths are way down, hospitalizations are beginning to decline again. It’s all good sign. I think that it’s the prerogative of private venue owners to say we want our venue to be safe and we want to be able to continue to offer stuff in the future,” said Dr. Jay Wolfson, Senior Associate Dean for Health Policy and Practice at the USF Morsani College of Medicine.
Dr. Wolfson believes the requirement will help slow the spread of Covid-19, but also points out possible challenges due to a new Florida law that prevents businesses from asking for proof of vaccination.
“The Florida law, and the executive order in Florida prohibits anybody from requiring proof of vaccination. I think that’s going to work its way through some court system, and there will be some challenges,” said Dr. Wolfson.
Some people posted complaints on the Amphitheater’s Facebook claiming the new rule was implemented after they bought tickets.
8 On Your Side reached out to Live Nation for comment but did not receive a response.