Masks are now required at sports games, concerts and other large events in Los Angeles County — regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.
The new rule went into effect 11:59 p.m. Thursday and applies to all large outdoor events with more than 10,000 people attending, like music or food festivals, car shows, large endurance events, marathons, parades, sporting events and concerts.
That means fans will again need to mask up to go to Dodger Stadium, the Rose Bowl, the L.A. Coliseum, SoFi Stadium, the Hollywood Bowl and other large venues.
People can take their masks off when they’re eating or drinking, but have to promptly put them back on when they’re done, according to the updated health officer order.
L.A. County was already requiring masks at public indoor settings like stores, offices and theaters.
Adding mega events to the list of places where the added protection is required comes as the county sees increased coronavirus infections and hospitalizations.
“To reduce the spread of COVID-19 and the Delta variant, universal masking is now required at all outdoor mega events where thousands of people from many different communities are crowded together, often for extended periods of time,” L.A. County Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement earlier this week. “The most sensible way to add protection is to please keep you mask on when in indoor public places or worksites and at outdoor mega events when not eating or drinking.”
Health experts say large events increase the risk of coronavirus transmission since people crowd close together for long periods of time.
Also, the larger the number of people gathered in one setting, the greater the likelihood that someone infected with coronavirus is present, and the more people exposed, according to the California Department of Public Health.
Activities like singing, yelling or cheering can increase the risk of spreading the virus, health officials say.
What about showing proof of vaccination?
Masks are required at all L.A. County outdoor mega events regardless of vaccination status.
The state recommends that large outdoor venues ask for attendees’ COVID-19 vaccination status or negative coronavirus test results, but it isn’t mandated.
However, for smaller indoor venues that have more than 1,000 attendees, the state will start requiring that all attendees show proof of vaccination or present a recent negative coronavirus test result starting Sept. 20.
And while previously, California officials were letting people “self-attest” to being vaccinated, that will no longer be allowed.
Here’s what you can use to prove vaccination, if asked:
- The CDC COVID-19 vaccine record card
- The WHO Yellow Card
- A photocopy of a vaccination card
- A photo of the vaccine card on a phone or other electronic device
- Documentation of vaccination from a health care provider
- A digital record that includes a QR code that when scanned by a SMART Health Card reader displays to the reader client name, date of birth, vaccine dates and vaccine type
- Documentation of vaccination from other contracted employers who follow these vaccination records guidelines and standards.