This afternoon, the New Jersey Devils and the Prudential Center announced a new COVID vaccination policy that is required for anyone to attend any and all events at the Prudential Center. This was implemented based on an executive order from the City of Newark, where the Devils and Prudential Center are based. Here are the main details:
- From January 10, 2022 to February 9, 2022, all attendees of age 5 and older will be required to show proof of having received at least one COVID-19 vaccination dose.
- From February 10 and onward, all attendees of age 5 and older will be required to show proof of being fully vaccinated.
- Vaccination status is based on Center of Disease Control (CDC) guidelines.
- Proof of vaccination can be provided by either showing an actual vaccination card, a complete picture of the vaccination card, or an online digital vaccination record (e.g. the Docket app). All proof must come with an accompanying photo identification for those who are 18 or older.
- Exemptions will be provided to those who provide a signed certification by the attendee and licensed healthcare provided that certifies that receiving a CDC-approved vaccine would be detrimental to the health of the guest and that the healthcare provided has medically advised the guest to not receive any vaccine.
- The mask mandate that came from the City of Newark is still in effect. All attendees will be required to wear masks throughout being at the arena unless actively eating or drinking.
This new vaccination mandate from the City of Newark will take effect on the same night that the Devils are currently scheduled to host Tampa Bay. And the full vaccination will begin for those attending the Seton Hall home game against Xavier. You will not need it for the New Year’s Eve game against Edmonton or the Devils game against Columbus on January 6, presuming both of those games still happen. Likewise, it will not impact the scheduled Seton Hall games on New Year’s Day (vs. Villanova) or January 8 (vs. UConn); or the AEW show on January 5. In other words, you have a little time to get prepared for getting your records in order. In the meantime, please wear a mask if you go. That is required as of right now.
From personal experience, showing off the Docket app has been quick for me. Just have it ready before going through the metal detectors at either entrance and you’re good to go. Please try not to make a scene or a statement to the security staff or ushers by refusing to wear a mask or bringing a vaccination record. It will only have you removed and everyone else held by it to be highly annoyed and colder. This is not their policy. This is from the City of Newark. Please go to nearby City Hall if you would like to register a complaint about it. The Prudential Center staff cannot change it. I cannot change it. Go to Newark. (And don’t be a jerk about this in the comments. Even if you’re in favor; it’s not like you came up with this policy either.)
Of course, I would be lying if I was not a little concerned about these games even happening at this point. Further infections on the Devils or on other teams could lead to more postponements. Any changes to the travel policy between Canada and the United States will impact games, such as Friday’s game with Edmonton or January 15 and 17 in Montreal and Toronto, respectively. Despite there being a vaccine and booster shots available, it seems like we’re re-visiting 2020 where everyone is in the dark trying to find their way through this pandemic. I don’t know. But as ever, it is a fluid situation. There is a game tonight. That much I do know. And there’s a new vaccination policy for the Rock. That much is also true. Let us go from there.