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Thursday, February 25, 2021

TD Garden, Fenway Park Can Open At 12% Capacity For Fans Starting March 22

Governor Charlie Baker announced Thursday that fans will be allowed at Massachusetts stadiums and arenas beginning March 22.

Starting March 1, Massachusetts will move back into Phase 3, Step 2 of its reopening plan, then on March 22 to Step 4, Phase 1. That is when stadiums will be allowed to have crowds with a capacity restriction of 12%.

“These large venues employ a lot of people and many of them have been out of work for a very long time,” Baker said. “We’ve been watching how these venues perform in other states, and believe with the right safety measures in place they can operate responsibly and safely here in the Commonwealth as well.”

The Bruins would be the first team eligible to host fans with a home game scheduled against the New York Islanders on March 23. The Celtics’ first home game with fans could be March 29, while Red Sox opening day is scheduled for April 1.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:09 PM | 24 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: coronavirus, fenway park

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   1. villageidiom Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:13 PM (#6006783)
Until I'm vaccinated, hard pass. After that, yeah, sure.
   2. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:17 PM (#6006784)
I'd be more scared about the train ride to the game than the game itself.
   3. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:21 PM (#6006785)
Until I'm vaccinated, hard pass. After that, yeah, sure.
Wicked hahd pass until I got a shaht in my ahm.
   4. Nasty Nate Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:55 PM (#6006788)
I'll go to Fenway before being vaccinated assuming lots of other people have been vaccinated in between now and then, the capacity is low, and I don't take a bus/train to get there.
   5. Jay Seaver Posted: February 25, 2021 at 03:55 PM (#6006789)
I'd be more scared about the train ride to the game than the game itself.


Pretty much exactly where I've been in terms of going to the movies when they were open around here. Which I've done, Massachusetts rules from August-December were basically "stay masked, no snacks (so no reason to take the mask off), at least one empty seat between parties", I work from home, and don't have anyone else in my apartment. With few big movies open, it's been us hard-core movie-lovers, and I've gotten wary since they started letting them sell concessions. But, yeah, the subway has been more unnerving than the theater.

Fenway's something different. 12% is pretty close to 2 seats between people (11% would be blocks of 9 seats with the one in the middle filled, and putting those blocks beside each other is two), but those are small seats, you yell a lot more, etc. Supposedly the first ticket in my 10-game package is the 6th of April, and part of the reason why they're not doing paper tickets this year is likely to make it easier to shuffle seats around for distancing and let people exchange games, but I figure I probably won't get an email from the Red Sox about how they're handling it until mid-March.
   6. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: February 25, 2021 at 05:19 PM (#6006798)
Fenway's something different. 12% is pretty close to 2 seats between people
Maybe they'll only sell the seats that face the field. That's probably right around 12% or so.
   7. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: February 25, 2021 at 05:37 PM (#6006803)
The Reds announced today they'd open at 30% capacity, which seems high.
   8. Lowry Seasoning Salt Posted: February 25, 2021 at 05:52 PM (#6006809)
With my luck I'd go to a game at Fenway and still get a seat with an obstructed view.
   9. Snowboy Posted: February 25, 2021 at 07:18 PM (#6006812)
Reds announcement cited Governor DeWine as setting capacity at 30%
Presumably the same will apply to Cleveland Baseball Team, although their fans are unlikely to test that limit this year.
   10. Rough Carrigan Posted: February 26, 2021 at 12:00 AM (#6006840)
So arbitrary.
Is there any scientific backing for 12% instead of 30% or 100%?
   11. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: February 26, 2021 at 08:05 AM (#6006854)

I’d probably be willing to go. I’ve done outdoor dining, gone to the beach, done other outdoor activities. I wouldn’t go to a full stadium but 12% seems pretty safe.

Knicks and Rangers are allowing 10% capacity at MSG now, and requiring a negative COVID test before you go. But that’s indoor, and I’m still not quite comfortable with that. But I assume it means that the state will allow the NY baseball teams to host some fans if they want to.
   12. villageidiom Posted: February 26, 2021 at 10:10 AM (#6006867)
Is there any scientific backing for 12% instead of 30% or 100%?
I'm surprised it's that high for Fenway. It should be 1%, because the seats are so small any one seat has 99 other seats within 6 feet of it.
   13. Jay Seaver Posted: February 26, 2021 at 11:33 AM (#6006879)
So arbitrary.
Is there any scientific backing for 12% instead of 30% or 100%?


Like I was mentioning earlier, 12% is 1-out-of-8.5. Round up to 1-in-9, and you've got one person with 8 empty seats around them, which don't overlap with the next person with 8 empty seats around them. Two empty seats in any direction is about 6 feet/2 meters, if you go by that rule of thumb. Obviously, most pods won't just be one person, but that lets you space them out a little more.

I'm not saying that anyone official was using that logic - it may just be that they were using half the arbitrary 25% movie theaters and the like opened with because people would be yelling and moving around more - but it at least accidentally makes a little more sense than some of the other things that have re-opened.
   14. PeteF3 Posted: February 26, 2021 at 12:33 PM (#6006887)
Except there's a difference between indoor gatherings and outdoor gatherings. And a further difference between just sitting quietly and yelling and cheering and singing, as tends to happen at baseball games. Do those two factors cancel each other out? To what degree?
   15. Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: February 26, 2021 at 01:09 PM (#6006894)
Except there's a difference between indoor gatherings and outdoor gatherings. And a further difference between just sitting quietly and yelling and cheering and singing, as tends to happen at baseball games. Do those two factors cancel each other out? To what degree?


I don't think anyone knows the answers to those questions with any precision. Governments and companies are just giving it their best shot to try and balance the desire to not have a couple million more people die while at the same time trying to have life go on with at least a small degree or normalcy.
   16. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 26, 2021 at 01:48 PM (#6006899)
There were some NFL stadiums that had 15-25 percent capacity, and AFAIK, they weren't proven to be spreader events (despite many visual instances of fans not complying with mask requirements). And community case rates were much higher back then than they are now.
   17. The Yankee Clapper Posted: February 26, 2021 at 03:04 PM (#6006913)
The headlines I saw indicated there were no outbreaks traceable to the NFL or college football games with limited spectators, and that was mostly before vaccines were available. So, MLB should be in better shape, especially if vaccine administration continues to ramp up.

I’m waiting for my 2nd shot (Pfizer), which should be next week, and don’t have any priority other than age (not that much!) and a willingness to accept any available appointment. That’s Northern Virginia, which is doing a bit better than some places. I’d go to a Nationals game, if allowed, although I expect D.C. to lag behind a lot of places in allowing such activities. Outdoors, at ~ 20-25% capacity, with masks required, sanitation measures in place, and a healthy chunk of the spectators already vaccinated, seems like a reasonable risk.
   18. Tom Nawrocki Posted: February 26, 2021 at 03:43 PM (#6006916)
The Rockies just announced that they will be letting in 12,500 fans per game, which is ~25 percent of capacity.
   19. Pirate Joe Posted: February 26, 2021 at 10:30 PM (#6006948)
There were some NFL stadiums that had 15-25 percent capacity, and AFAIK, they weren't proven to be spreader events (despite many visual instances of fans not complying with mask requirements). And community case rates were much higher back then than they are now.



I was at the Pitt - Notre Dame football game when Pitt was allowed to have 5,000 fans at Heinz Field. Other than the people in my group I don't think I was within six feet of more than three or four people all day. And two of those were the guy who scanned the ticket on my phone and the usher who insisted on showing us to our seats even though we knew where we were going.

The way they did it was that, for instance, the row that we were sitting in had 22 seats in it. Seat 1 was empty. We were in seats 2-5. Seats 6-17 were empty. There was another group in seats 18-21. And then seat 22 was empty. In the row behind us there was no one in seats 1-9, a group of four in seats 10-13, and then no one in seats 14-22. And the row behind that was left completely empty.

That pattern repeated itself all through the section, so basically there were 12 people for every 66 seats, or 18% of the seats were in use.

   20. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: February 28, 2021 at 03:02 PM (#6007031)
So arbitrary.



Science, schmience. Amirite?
   21. bunyon Posted: March 01, 2021 at 11:36 AM (#6007098)
The arbitrary (and stupid, anti-science) bit is that an indoor arena will have the same percent capacity as indoor.

I'd go to Fenway today at 12% if everyone is masked (and not masked "unless eating or drinking"). In May or June? If we hit our vaccine projections, I'd happily go unmasked at 12%.

The outdoors is quite safe. Having the same capacity indoors makes no sense at all.
   22. JJ1986 Posted: March 01, 2021 at 12:55 PM (#6007125)
I didn't double check this but I heard on the radio this morning that concert halls and auditoriums in Boston are now open at 50% capacity.
   23. bunyon Posted: March 01, 2021 at 01:48 PM (#6007135)
JJ, if that's true, Fenway should be at 50, as well. There is zero reason to have an outdoor facility at lower cap than an indoor. And, really, the cap on the outdoor should be a good deal higher.
   24. Nasty Nate Posted: March 01, 2021 at 01:55 PM (#6007137)
The 50% capacity is for all of Massachusetts except Boston for the time being, as far as I can tell. And it maxes out at 500 people.

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