KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Sporting Kansas City is giving their best shot at ending the pandemic. The team partnered with the Unified Government in Wyandotte County to offer COVID-19 vaccines to fans before Wednesday’s match.
There were cheers when Sporting KC’s Starting XI were announced and with every shot on goal as the team took on the San Jose Earthquakes.
But Emily Seed was cheering just as loudly when her son got the shot she’d been waiting for, the COVID-19 vaccine.
“I’m so glad that he’s 18 years old and he made the decision himself. I didn’t force it on him and it just so happened that they were doing it tonight which is amazing,” she said.
“It’s convenient you’ve got the Sporting match you get the COVID shot,” her son, Joshua Morgan, said.
Fans received a Sporting KC scarf and are also entered in drawing to win a game-worn jersey. Aiden Evans, 14, won that jersey at a similar vaccination event last month.
“We just showed up and he was able to get it done and it was an excellent opportunity because we were already here,” Beth Evans said.
Thousands of fans passed by the vaccine tents, many of them in an age range health officials have had particular trouble reaching 12-35. But for many the decision wasn’t so easy.
“I didn’t really want to get the vaccination because I didn’t really trust the government,” Brenda Vargas said.
Her decision to get it tonight had little to do with the scarf giveaway. Vargas says her aunt with COVID-19 has been given 48 hours to live.
“Now I realize this is real and this is happening really close to me. So I’m scared for my family, my kids my husband and everyone that is around me,” she said.
Wyandotte County trails national and state averages with just 32% of people fully vaccinated. They will hold another vaccine event at Children’s Mercy Park at the team’s match Saturday July 31. Vaccines are available to ticketed fans 12 and over from the time gates open through halftime.