Sep. 13—Fans attending the UND men's hockey game against Penn State in Nashville's Bridgestone Arena, who are age 12 or older, will be required to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the game to be admitted.
Bridgestone Arena announced the policy — effective for all events at the venue — will go into place on Oct 2. It will stay in place through at least Nov. 15.
The U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game between UND and Penn State is scheduled for Oct. 30 in the home of the NHL's Nashville Predators.
Bridgestone Arena says guests under the age of 12 will be permitted to enter the arena if they wear a mask at all times while inside the venue, or if they present a printed or digital negative COVID-19 PCR or antigen test administered by a healthcare professional within 72 hours prior to the event that includes their name and the date of the test.
There are a few ways to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test result:
An official, government-issued vaccination card listing the guest's name and dates of doses, including the date the last dose was administered.
A photo or digital version of an official, government-issued vaccination card listing the guest's name and dates of doses, including the date the last dose was administered.
A printed or digital negative COVID-19 PCR or antigen test administered by a healthcare professional within 72 hours prior to a guest's given event that includes the guest's name and the date of the test.
Bridgestone Arena says full vaccination means "at least 14 days have passed after your second dose of the Pfizer-BioNtech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine (or other COVID-19 vaccinations recognized by World Health Organization) or at least 14 days have passed after your single dose of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine."
There is not expected to be any capacity restrictions or physical distancing requirements at the event, so Ralph Engelstad Arena general manager Jody Hodgson said the event is a full go.
"This does not change our thoughts or approach or mindset in holding the event," Hodgson said.
Hodgson has been communicating with Bridgestone Arena officials and hopes to have more detailed information for fans in the coming days, including efforts to try to provide a rapid testing option for fans in Nashville.
"Throughout the pandemic we have been consistent in stating that the health and wellness of all arena guests, Predators fans, our employees, players and performers is our No. 1 priority," said Sean Henry, President and CEO of Bridgestone Arena and the Nashville Predators. "Just two months ago, we believed that we were returning to a sense of normalcy, but unfortunately, with the impact of the delta variant, that has not been the case. We are united with health care professionals in our belief that the only way to end this pandemic is to get more people vaccinated.
"To that end, we want to do our part with these policies to make sure that our game and event attendees are as safe as possible and, at the same time, we will use our public platform to amplify the message of the importance of vaccines in hopes of encouraging more people to get vaccinated."
Bridgestone Arena has a Q&A about their policy here: https://www.bridgestonearena.com/bridgestone-arena-protocols.
According to the COVID-19 data from both the New York Times and the Washington Post, Tennessee is currently averaging more new COVID-19 positive tests than any state in the country.
Tennessee and North Dakota both rank among the bottom 10 states in percentage of the population fully vaccinated.
UND is expecting to bring roughly 17,000 fans to Nashville for the event, which was originally scheduled for October 2020 but was delayed a year due to the pandemic.