LA County mask mandate for 'mega events' like concerts, sports games takes effect
LOS ANGELES - A public health order in Los Angeles County went into effect Friday, Aug. 20 that requires people to wear masks at "outdoor mega events," regardless of vaccination status.
The county defined "outdoor mega events" as any event that attracts a crowd of over 10,000 people, including music or food festivals, car shows, large endurance events and marathons, parades, sporting events and concerts.
The revised health order requires everyone at an outdoor mega event to wear a face mask, except when actively eating or drinking. It also clarified that "actively eating or drinking" is the "limited time during which the mask can be removed briefly to eat or drink, and that it must be immediately put back on afterward," the order states.
The new order takes effect at 11:59 p.m. on Thursday.
The mandate will affect people attending games at Dodger Stadium, as well as Rams/Chargers games at SoFi Stadium, LAFC games at Banc of California Stadium and LA Galaxy Games at Dignity Health Sports Park. Concert-goers at the Hollywood Bowl will also be affected.
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The Los Angeles Department of Public Health reported 2,426 new COVID-19 cases Monday, raising the overall total from throughout the pandemic to 1,352,791. The five new deaths lifted the county's overall death toll to 24,905.
There were 1,679 people hospitalized in the county with COVID-19 as of Monday, including 402 in intensive care, according to state figures. That was up from 1,653 overall patients and 377 ICU patients reported Sunday.
Cases have been reported at an average rate of more than 3,000 cases a day for about the past week, and a rise in case numbers can be expected in the coming weeks with increased testing at schools and businesses, according to county health officials.
The fans at Dodger Stadium Friday night were among the first to test out the county's new mandate, and the majority of fans appeared to follow the guidance.
"Masks are not always a favorite, but anything to get to come to the game. We will break out the masks," said Steve Demartini, who said he had not been to the stadium in a while due to COVID-19.
Lauren, a New York Mets fan, was also not bothered by the new mandate.
"I think that it's wonderful because we're protecting ourselves and protecting others around us. We're both fully vaccinated and we're definitely for the protection of others and ourselves," she said.
Employees at Dodger Stadium reminded people to wear their masks at all times regardless of vaccination status unless they were eating or drinking. The stadium also had signs posted detailing the new mandate from LA County.
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