New Yorkers Can Get COVID-19 Vaccines Beneath the Famous Blue Whale at the Natural History Museum

Cailey Rizzo
·2 min read
American Museum of Natural History
American Museum of Natural History

D. Finnin/©AMNH

New York City's American Museum of Natural History will become one of the city's latest COVID-19 vaccination sites later this week.

New Yorkers will be able to receive a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine in the museum's Hall of Ocean Life, beneath the gigantic blue whale model that hangs from the ceiling.

"This institution is dedicated to fostering scientific knowledge and understanding and providing access to the public so I can't even imagine a more important manifestation of our mission in action," President of the American Museum of Natural History, Ellen Futter, said this week, according to Time Out New York.

In "solidarity" with those receiving their shots below, the 94-foot fiberglass and polyurethane whale will temporarily sport a band-aid.

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Those who get vaccinated at the museum will receive a voucher for free future admission to the museum for a group of up to four people.

Vaccine appointments at the museum can be made online and are available Friday through Tuesday from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m., beginning April 23.

In a tweet on Monday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the vaccination site would welcome everyone but was specifically meant for those living and working in public housing, cultural workers, members of DC37 (a union of public employees), and museum staff.

The city reported 5.7 million vaccination doses earlier this week.

The museum reopened to the public in late August with restrictions, including advance ticket reservations, temperature checks and mandatory face masks.

Other signs of progress include this week's announcement that museums will be able to increase to 50% capacity (up from 25%) starting next Monday. Movie theatres will be allowed 33 percent capacity. Large indoor arenas will be able to raise capacity from 10 to 25% beginning May 19.

Cailey Rizzo is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure, currently based in Brooklyn. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, or at