The Oakland A’s played the 2020 season in front of cardboard cutouts while the green-and-gold faithful watched from home on TV due to the coronavirus pandemic, but the Coliseum will welcome fans back into the seats in 2021.
The A’s announced Friday that they’ve received approval to allow fans into the ballpark on April 1 for Opening Day, in cooperation with the local government and MLB.
Capacity will be limited based on what tier color Alameda County is in at the time, signifying factors like case rate and recent positivity rate. That means 20% capacity in the red tier, 33% in the orange tier, and 67% in the yellow (lowest) tier. The county is currently in the purple (highest) tier, but could improve to red “as soon as next week,” reports Michael Williams of the S.F. Chronicle.
Traditional single-game ticket sales begin March 23, but you can already buy FlexTix vouchers. Those who purchase FlexTix can begin redeeming the vouchers for tickets on March 18, five days before they go on sale to the public.
The team’s press release includes a list of policies and protocols to maximize health and safety (bullet points copied directly from the release):
- Physically-distanced seating: Guests will be seated in pods of two or four seats. Pod seating may be adapted in orange and yellow tiers.
- Face coverings required: Mandatory face coverings will be required for all fans, unless eating or drinking in the seats.
- Tickets sales will be restricted to California residents only.
- Mobile-only ticketing: All game tickets will be delivered via the MLB Ballpark app, ensuring a touchless entry into the ballpark. Walk-up tickets will not be available.
- Cashless transactions: All purchases in the ballpark will be contactless and cashless. Debit cards will be available for purchase using cash at a limited number of locations inside the stadium.
- Mobile concessions: No concourse concessions will be available to begin the season. Fans can order limited concession offerings on their mobile devices to be delivered directly to their seats.
- All social spaces, including the Treehouse, Stomping Ground, Shibe Park, and Championship Plaza, will be closed.
- Tailgating will not be allowed. Parking will be $30 and cash will not be accepted.
- Parking gates will open 90 minutes before first pitch; ballpark gates will open one hour before first pitch.
- Hand sanitizer: Hand sanitizer dispensers will be widely available.
- Staff health screenings: All full-time employees and event staff will be subject to health screenings before entering the ballpark.
“We are excited to safely welcome fans back to our ballpark for the upcoming season,” said A’s President Dave Kaval, via the team’s press release. “We thank Governor Newsom for his leadership and guidance during this process, and Alameda County for partnering with us to develop a comprehensive plan that complies with local health directives and provides a safe experience for our fans, employees, players, and vendors.”