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Covid test sites pop up ahead of Coachella Festival

The Coachella Valley Music Festival is known for hosting top artists of all genres. It’s also known for bringing big crowds along with it.

Some festival goers say they’re excited for the event, but will still try to keep their distance.

Going to Coachella

“Probably distancing for myself personally. I really like going to the front of crowds for festivals but this might be a time where I step back,” said Cory Watson.

Joshua Bliss, who is an emergency room nurse, experienced the pandemic first hand.

After a break in big events over the last 2 years, he thinks it’s much safer now but will still keep his guards up.

“I feel like there’s always a strain of caution with it just because it’s always been in the back of my head because I’ve been seeing it in the ER for the past 2 years. But I feel like also, we’re in between variants right now, I haven’t seen that many cases in the ER currently. I feel a little bit more safe now that I would’ve last year or the year before.”

In February, organizers of the Coachella and Stagecoach Music Festival dropped the requirement for proof of vaccination, negative test results or masks.

However, some say they would’ve felt safer with some of the requirements in place.

“I feel like they should’ve at least kept like the vaccination requirements because I’m definitely noticing that people that are vaccinated aren’t as sick,” said Bliss.

Could Coachella be a super spreader event?

Although Riverside County has been experiencing a decline in Covid cases, they’ll still be keeping a close eye on numbers.

“Probably by the end of the week, or the beginning of next week, if there is going to be a boost or a bump, we'll be able to see it then. And in particularly, we'll be able to see it out in the Coachella Valley area,” said Riverside University Health System Spokesperson Jose Arballo.

County health officials urge attendees to prioritize their health, over the festival.

“Protect your own health. And if you're not feeling well, um, by all means, you know, consider staying at home I know it's a big financial investment for those that purchase tickets. But you know, for this thing, you know, your health is more important,” Arballo said.

Covid-19 test sites are popping up in anticipation of the festival.

There will be rapid 15-minute antigen COVID-19 testing services by Guardian Testing available at Indian Wells Tennis Garden and the Camping Hub.

Indian Wells Tennis Garden – COVID Testing Hours:

  • Wednesday 4/13/22 and 4/20/22: 8am – 12pm
  • Thursday 4/14/22 and 4/21/22: 8am – 12pm
  • Friday 4/15/22 and 4/22/22: 8am – 12pm
  • Saturday 4/16/22 and 4/23/22: 8am – 12pm
  • Sunday 4/17/22 and 4/24/22: 10am -12pm

Camping hub – COVID Testing Hours:

  • Thursday 4/14/22 and 4/21/22: 1pm – 6pm
  • Friday 4/15/22 and 4/22/22: 1pm – 6pm
  • Saturday 4/16/22 and 4/23/22: 1pm – 6pm
  • Sunday 4/17/22 and 4/24/22: 1pm – 6pm
  • *Times/locations are subject to change without notice.

You can also find county test sites here.

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Samantha Lomibao

Samantha joined KESQ News Channel 3 in May 2021. Learn more about Samantha here here.

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