SF’s Plans for Indoor Live Ticketed Events Coming April 14
On April 14, San Francisco will issue formal guidelines to allow live performances, meetings, and other events with capacity limits in indoor settings to begin starting the following day, April 15
Mayor London N. Breed and Director of Health Dr. Grant Colfax today announced that San Francisco is on track to issue guidelines that will allow indoor live events to resume with capacity limits and other safety protocols beginning April 15, 2021. These planned guidelines respond to new guidance from the State announced last week.
The State’s announcement established operating guidelines for indoor live events and performances, which are activities that had not been previously addressed or allowed to reopen in the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy.
Additionally, the State recently changed the allowances established for meetings and private events such as conferences and receptions as well as expanding the number of participants allowed to participate in indoor and outdoor social gatherings. San Francisco also plans to update its health order to offer local guidance for conducting these activities.
San Francisco will generally align with what is permitted by the State with some additional local safety modifications.
What You Need to Know
- SF plans to announce full indoor event guidelines on April 14
- First day for live indoor events in SF is April 15
- Maximum indoor capacity will start at 35% – assigned seats required, and proof of either vaccine or recent negative COVID test required
- Venues can also operate at 15% (max 200 people) without poof of vaccination or negative testSee the full press release
San Francisco plans to allow up to the maximum capacity of 35% for indoor ticketed and seated events and performances with an approved Health and Safety Plan, so long as the State’s social distancing guidelines can be maintained, and all participants keep their masks on except when eating or drinking in their assigned seats, and show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test.
For venues operating at 15% capacity or less, with no more than 200 people, an approved Health and Safety Plan and proof of vaccination or a negative test will not be required.
San Francisco will work with stakeholders from industries impacted by the new guidance to develop the finer points of its local guidelines for both indoor ticketed performances as well as indoor meetings and private events to ensure they are clear and implementable with safety precautions within the industry context.
A key criteria for the resumption and continuation of indoor live performances, events, and meetings and expansion of social gatherings will be a stable or declining rate of new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. As public health officials continue to monitor San Francisco’s health indicators, the City may need to pause or rollback activities if data suggests that COVID-19 is significantly increasing within the community again.
Final Indoor Health & Safety Guidelines to be Issued April 14
On Wednesday, April 14, and subject to the criteria of stable or declining case and hospitalization rates, the San Francisco Department of Public Health expects to issue final health and safety guidelines to reopen indoor live events, performances and meetings as well as some additional expansions of activities allowed under the State’s orange tier, including outdoor performances and events, as of 8:00 on Thursday April 15, 2021. The City will post the revised Health Order with detailed guidance to its webpage by the end of the day Wednesday April 14, 2021.
The Office of Economic and Workforce Development will host a webinar April 8, at 4 pm with the City’s Acting Health Officer to present the changes that will go into effect as of April 15, and offer information about what the City expects to reopen once it moves into the yellow tier. Interested parties may register for that webinar here: link.oewd.org/yellow
San Francisco’s new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations remain low. At this time, San Francisco is averaging 37 new cases a day and has been maintaining a stable average between 30 and 40 new cases a day since early March 2021. Likewise, COVID-19 hospitalizations have been declining since February. Recently however, those trends have flattened and begun to tick up, though they remain low. With the growing prevalence of variants in the Bay Area and the surge in cases in Michigan and the northeast, public health officials are closely monitoring any changes to cases that may indicate increasing contagion.
With the flattening in the decline of cases, the City is emphasizing the need for continued adherence to public health mitigation measures, including by those who have been vaccinated. All members of the public are urged to wear masks, wash hands, and practice physical distancing whenever they are outside their homes. Customers and participants in regulated activities including indoor performances, meetings, and other events will be required to take these precautions, in addition to meeting vaccination or testing requirements for larger events. People at risk for severe illness with COVID-19, such as unvaccinated older adults and individuals with health risks, and members of their household are urged to continue taking strong precautions by choosing lower-risk options whenever possible.
San Francisco continues to move forward with reopening and expansion in recognition of the need for economic relief by the City’s businesses and workers after more than a year of operating restrictions due to COVID-19. Bolstering these efforts is the City’s ongoing dissemination of vaccine. At this time, over 50% of San Franciscans have received their first dose of vaccine, as have over 80% of the City’s residents over 65. Last week, the City began allowing anyone over the age of 50 to receive a vaccine and starting Thursday, April 15, plans to allow general access to vaccines by anyone over the age of 16. Although consistent supply of COVID-19 vaccine remains a challenge preventing the City from distributing vaccines to its full capacity, it continues to make significant progress toward vaccinating people who live and work in San Francisco.