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New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is opening Gillette Stadium as a mass COVID-19 vaccination site and has suggested other NFL teams should do the same.
“We have celebrated some great moments here over the past 19 years, but maybe none as important as what we’re doing here today, right now,” Kraft said during a press conference with Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker.
Gillette Stadium will become the first major sports venue located in the Northeastern U.S. to turn itself into a vaccination site when it opens on Monday.
“We’ve always thought that our purchasing the team would be a way to bring the community together and hopefully do good work,” Kraft said. “None of us imagine this to happen, but the fact that we have a space that can be utilized to try to help serve a public need is very rewarding for us.
“Hopefully we can use the outdoor space as well because we have to get our country back. I think it effects people’s psychological, minds, everything else. Getting these vaccines will do more to get people peace of mind. I hope every venue that can do this throughout the country does it.”
Fenway Park, the home of MLB’s Boston Red Sox, will do the same Feb. 1.
Kraft added that the world will have normalized enough for fans to start attending games again next season.
“As much as we love hosting these vaccinations, what we’re looking forward to most is to return to normal and host Patriot and Revolution fans in person this coming season,” said Kraft. “So, we’ll keep our fingers crossed on that.”