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10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots


As of May 3, about 44% of people in the United States had received their first vaccine against COVID-19. Many of these injections are given in typical places like hospitals, pharmacies and doctor’s offices. But sometimes the vaccination takes place in more interesting places: remodeled movie theaters, empty sports stadiums, and abandoned malls or stores.

Below are some of the more unusual places people have received their COVID-19 vaccines.

1. In an old Woolworth store

Nicolás Esparza said he received his COVID-19 vaccine at a former Woolworth in the Wonderland of the Americas mall in San Antonio, Texas.

“I walked into the mall and the staff at the local medical center were directing people to different showcases depending on the first or second dosage and the type of vaccine. My first and second doses were both at old Woolworths. For me, the troubling part was that all of this was happening next to the few small stores that remained open. It was a strange juxtaposition of people shopping and people getting vaccinated. For example, one activity is to prevent the spread and the other is to hasten. It was just weird. – Nicolás Esparza, dissemination coordinator

2. In an abandoned JCPenney

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

Masks have been placed over old photos of mannequins at the abandoned JCPenney where Udi Greenberg received a vaccine.

“My vaccination took place at JCPenney which is in the next town, West Lebanon, New Hampshire. The experience was somewhat surreal: standing in line in a huge abandoned, empty store while people [received] the directions and shots of men in uniform (National Guard) and masks appeared post-apocalyptic. But it was also very efficiently organized. Everything went quickly and smoothly. “- Udi Greenberg, historian

3. In a fancy hotel ballroom

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

Brittany Lute received her coronavirus vaccine at the Cleveland Clinic Intercontinental hotel.

“This is the first time that I have felt such hope in a long time. I had my vaccine in a ballroom, so I feel more candle-lit. But above all, I feel grateful. – Brittany Lute, RN

4. In a college football stadium

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

Elsbeth Russell waits after receiving her COVID-19 vaccine at a University of Florida stadium.

“I had mine at the Champions Club at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at the University of Florida. As [alumna] from the University of Florida, I’ve been to the stadium several times to cheer on the Gators during football games. I never imagined being there to get vaccinated during a global pandemic. “- Elsbeth Russell, Head of Content Marketing

5. In a Six Flags car park

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

“The best experience I’ve had at a Six Flags,” Amanda Ach said of her COVID-19 vaccine at the amusement park in Bowie, Maryland.

“There were two entrances – one for vaccines and one for people going to the park, which was fun. We drove through several thousand cones to the overflow parking lot and stood in line. We got in, rolled down the window and took the picture without getting out of the car. Then they made us wait 15 minutes for the sighting – they tell you to honk your horn if you’re not feeling well. … It was super easy, extremely well organized and definitely the best experience I have had in a Six Flags. – Amanda Ach

6. Near the concession stand in a cinema

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shotsMint Images via Getty Images

Katie Jones received her vaccine at a movie theater in Wilmington, North Carolina, which has been converted to a temporary COVID-19 clinic. There were still candies in the concession boxes.

“It was funny, surreal and touching at the same time to receive my vaccine in a building intended for such a different purpose. I have no interest in going to a movie in public until it’s safe, but being in the theater taking my fix next to a sleeping candy box reminded me of one of the many reasons for which I am on board with all we can do to stop the pandemic. “- Katie Jones, Technical Writing and Knowledge Manager

7. Inside a concert venue

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

“It gave me hope that I could have fun experiences with the people I love most in the same place where I was getting a life-saving vaccine,” said Karen Hogan.

“It was surreal to get vaccinated at the Théâtre des Arts Vivants [in Philadelphia] since the last time I was there it was for a concert I attended with friends. The pandemic has taken us so far away that, frankly, it gave me hope that I could have fun experiences with the people I love most in the same place where I was getting a life-saving vaccine. – Karen Hogan, Business Development Strategist

8. On a former Greyhound racetrack

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shotsGoogle maps

The old Tampa Greyhound Track where mass vaccination is now underway.

“I received my Pfizer vaccinations in the parking lot of a former greyhound racing track that has become a poker room and simulcast [in Tampa]. The site was once the location of a large hotel whose main attraction was the “ healing waters ” of nearby Sulfur Springs, but the springs and the river have been tainted by years of pollution and runoff, and the hotel has long been demolished. The kind of dystopian transformation the place has undergone over the years seems to fit well against the backdrop of this pandemic, but it was nonetheless a surreal experience stepping into the bedroom of FEMA tents lined with military personnel to be vaccinated. – Jeannie Mounger, Ph.D. candidate at the University of South Florida

9. Inside the old medical barracks

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

Nicole Anderson said the Harborview Medical Center fire station in Seattle was like a “dug house.”

“My Vax site was a barracks for doctors from the nearby hospital. The hospital is still there, but obviously there are no beds and other things in the [barracks] build more. It is essentially a hollowed-out house. It’s at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. The shots were given in what I’m assuming were rooms which I think gave them more privacy for each patient. It was also very easy to know where to go as there were more walls etc. to guide us in a loop. I think it was perfect for appointment vaccinations. – Nicole anderson

ten. In a rural fire department

10 of the weirdest and most interesting places people got COVID shots

The Glascock County Fire Department in Gibson, Georgia is where Charlsie Kate Paine received her first COVID-19 vaccine.

“The first entry available to me was in Gibson, GA, 90 miles away. I was so excited to have a date that I didn’t mind driving. I got the hit in my car, after which a sheriff’s deputy [directed] me to a parking spot and told me he would let me know when my 15 minutes was up! – Charlsie Kate Paine, lawyer

The stories have been edited for their style, clarity and length.

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