Sunshine, baseball, bratwursts and... free COVID shots?

Saturday (6/5) the Billings Mustangs are back in the Magic City, kicking off a three-game series against the Great Falls Voyagers. The weather should be just about perfect for the 6:35 pm game, under the lights at Dehler Park, as the 5-5 Mustangs settle in to their season. On the concourse, you'll notice something never-before-seen at a game; free COVID-19 vaccine shots.

Credit Governor Gianforte video screenshot via Facebook.
Credit Governor Gianforte video screenshot via Facebook.

Riverstone Health will be offering the free vaccine shots behind home plate.

Stadium gates open at 5:30 and the vaccine clinic runs from 5:30 to 7:00 pm. Riverstone Health will be located on the concourse area behind home plate. The Pfizer vaccine is approved for those 12+, with a second dose follow-up shot required three weeks later. The single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine is also offered for those 18+. Parental signature is required for minors.

Michael Foth - Townsquare Media
Michael Foth - Townsquare Media

Health officials note a recent uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations.

According to a Riverstone Health press release, local COVID-19 hospitalizations dropped to 5 on March 6th. Since then, numbers have slowly climbed to 21 Yellowstone County residents currently seeking COVID treatment in local hospitals (as of 6/3). Dr. Neil Ku, an infectious disease specialist at Billings Clinic, said in the release,

The majority of people hospitalized for COVID-19 are those who haven’t been fully vaccinated. When people get vaccinated, they help reduce the risk of hospitalization and reduce the risk that vulnerable people will get infected.

Upcoming free vaccination clinics include:

  • June 11, 10 a.m. to noon, Montana State University Billings student orientation.
  • June 11, 8 a.m. – 5pm, RiverStone Health, Lil Anderson Center, 123 S. 27th St.
  • June 24, 4:30 – 6:30 p.m., Gardener’s Market, South Park.
  • June 25, 10 a.m. to noon, Montana State University Billings orientation.
  • June 26, 1 – 3:00 p.m., SummerFair at MSUB.

Interestingly, in May of 2020, only two Yellowstone County Residents were hospitalized with COVID-19. In May of 2021 there were 34.

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