New York Is Giving Away State Park Passes to Anyone Who Gets Vaccinated This Week
New York is offering a free two-day state park pass to anyone who gets their first COVID-19 vaccine in the next week.
New York is also setting up vaccination clinics at 15 state parks, including Letchworth State Park, which considers itself the Grand Canyon of the East. The park is known for its waterfalls that rise as high as 600 feet and 66 miles of hiking trails.
"Providing those who get vaccinated with a free park pass is an incredible summer-season incentive," New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in announcing the promotion.
Vaccination rates in New York peaked in April and have since been on the decline, driving officials to get creative with their efforts to lure New Yorkers to roll up their sleeves.
To receive the state park passes, visitors will need to show that they have received either the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the first of two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine between May 24 and May 31.
They will be able to use their pass at any of New York's 181 state parks, which are home to 67 beaches and 35 pool and splash pads, making them ideal places to cool off on hot summer days.
New York City is also hoping to drive up COVID-19 vaccination rates ahead of summer by giving people the chance to get their shots at places such as Coney Island, Central Park, and the Rockaways, a popular beach escape for city dwellers.
"We are going to combine the joy of summer and the beaches reopening with the vaccination effort," New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said in news briefing covered by NBC New York.
Across the river, New Jersey is offering free beer at select local breweries to anyone who gets their first COVID-19 vaccine dose in May.