Austin music festival to require proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test
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A major music festival in Austin is requiring that attendees either show proof that they have received the COVID-19 vaccine or a negative test within 72 hours before attending the event.

The requirement was announced Thursday by the Austin City Limits Music Festival, which is slated to be held from Oct. 1-3 and Oct. 8-10 in the city. 

Eventgoers will need to bring either their vaccine record, proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test each day.

The festival said in its health policy that more information regarding mask usage would be included at a later time and that attendees are not required to get the COVID-19 vaccine in order to go to the music festival.

The announcement comes as Travis County, which includes part of Austin, and Texas grapple a surge of COVID-19 cases.

According to data from the city of Austin, Travis County saw 741 new cases Thursday and 847 the day before. New cases have been reported in the hundreds in recent days. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) noted that for Wednesday, Texas had 25,104 new cases. In comparison, cases were reported as low as the hundreds in June. 

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Austin Mayor Steve Adler (D) told The Hill on Wednesday that vaccinations and mask usage were critical in order to improve the current COVID-19 situation as Travis County and state see a rise of new infections. He said that the city was discussing how to safely handle events like ACL Music Festival.

“I think that we are going to have to live with this COVID virus for a while and we are going to have to learn how to continue living with that presence in our lives,” Adler said. “What I think that is going to have to mean is more and more events and opportunities and activities that are really just open to people that have been vaccinated.”

“I hope it helps encourage some to get vaccinated that might not otherwise do,” Adler added.

The announcement is part of a larger trend among cities and organizations seeking to tackle the rise of COVID-19 cases. 

Concert producer Live Nation has also said that it will require fans, musicians and staff to show a negative COVID-19 test or proof of vaccination beginning Oct. 4 after previously saying that it would give artists the ability to dictate those requirements, WRAL reported