MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The roaring applause of baseball fans will echo in a full Target Field Monday, after shutdowns and restrictions ruled the ball park for most of the past year.
It marks the first time the stadium will be at 100% capacity since October of 2019.READ MORE: COVID-19 In MN: Health Officials Report 700+ Additional Virus Cases, 5 More Deaths
The Minnesota Twins are commemorating the moment with free food Monday, Pride Night Tuesday and $5 tickets for students Wednesday. There’s also free Baby Blue Twins jerseys for the first 10,000 fans Friday.
Fans buying tickets Monday morning, including Melanie Herrera of Maple Plain, were excited for a packed house once again to cheer on the home team.
“We’re super excited to be back at full capacity, not see the cardboard cut outs,” Herrera said. “It wasn’t quite the same spirit I don’t think for the stadium. It’ll just be nice just to get full blown back into it.”
Local businesses close by in the North Loop welcome a boost from some of their most loyal customers. Inbound BrewCo is planning accordingly, with bartenders and managers excited to see more people in the mix. Kiley Westby is the brewery’s marketing manager.READ MORE: Vaccinated Minnesotan Stuck Abroad After Testing Positive For COVID-19 In Mexico
“The smiles are getting exchanged again, and it’s more electric, you can feel it,” Westby said.
All pandemic restrictions, including capacity limits, fully lifted in Minnesota over Memorial Day weekend. But Target Field took its time, reaching the pinnacle of opening all of the seats to fans Monday.
All of this comes against a backdrop of Minnesota hitting 70% of adults with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine before the holiday weekend, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
President Joe Biden hoped the United States would hit that mark for all American adults by the Fourth of July. The country has fallen just short of that with 67% of people 18 and older with at least one shot. The president implored Americans to get their shot during the White House Fourth of July celebration.
“It is the most patriotic thing you can do,” Biden said. “So please, if you haven’t gotten vaccinated.”MORE NEWS: COVID In Minnesota: State Begins Push To Vaccinate Teens Before School Starts
Minnesota ranks in the top half of states and U.S. territories for its population vaccinated.