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Vaccination sites are going viral: People are posting their shot hot spots — the weirder the better — all over Twitter and Instagram.
Since the COVID-19 vaccine rollout began in January, federal and local governments have been partnering with private businesses to make sure the shot is available to the greatest number of people as quickly and easily as possible.
This explains why one might find themselves on line at, say, a department store, sports arena or the tri-county fairgrounds — and not the doctor’s office — waiting for immunization.
In Maryland, for example, Six Flags America in Bowie was selected to be a mass vaccination site, thanks to robust infrastructure to allow for the influx of guests and access to cold storage.
And if getting the jab next to the high-flying Mind Eraser rollercoaster isn’t surreal enough, recent vaccine recipients on social media have shared a gallery of images from their unexpected vaccine sites.
“i got vaccinated in an abandoned kmart. my friend is getting her shot in a minor league baseball stadium (‘home of the long island ducks’). another friend in dodger stadium,” tweeted writer Michael Robbins on Tuesday.
His message has prompted hundreds to respond, some calling the experience “dystopian.”
“It was an abandoned Sears for me,” said one person, joining with the large cohort of recipients who got the vaccine in out-of-business or otherwise deserted businesses, such as the mall mainstay Charlotte Russe, the empty “husk” of a former Nordstrom, a now-defunct Shopko supermarket — which went out of business in 2019 — and a closed movie theatre, “right next to to the nachos,” one wrote.
In what one Twitter user called “the most Texas thing ever,” they revealed that their parents had gone to the Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth for inoculation. Many others chimed in to say they’d visited various other sporting arenas, too, such as a hockey arena, soccer stadium or a local gymnasium.
Some of the responses were unsettling, too. One person claimed that a National Guardsman had administered their dose “in the visitation room of the same prison where Mike Tyson served time.”
Churches, libraries, bars, schools and even a snowplow storage garage were also among the many vaccination sites discussed in the viral Twitter thread, which has over 38,000 likes and several hundred responses.
As of Tuesday afternoon, 148 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in the US, according to Bloomberg’s live tracker, with an average of about 2.77 million shots per day since January.