Horse racing and music fans will be able to enjoy live events again in the Australian state of Victoria, after the Government announced a trial of its ‘Vaccinated Economy’ reopening plan. 

Many parts of Australia currently have restrictions in place due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Melbourne Cup and concerts at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, as well as smaller venues across the state, will be allowed to welcome thousands of fully vaccinated people. The Melbourne Cup will be able to welcome up to 10,000 double-vaccinated attendees on November 2. 

Several thousand will be able to attend venues, but they are subject to consideration of the venue’s COVIDSafe Plan, as well as approval from Victoria’s Chief Health Officer. Smaller gigs will also need approval from the Chief Health Officer.

The final two days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival, which consist of Oaks Day and Stakes Day, will welcome up to 10,000 spectators, if the 80% double-vaccination threshold has been reached. Racing fans will be spread out across allocated seats and will be required to wear a face mask, and must be double-jabbed or have a valid exemption. 

The Victorian Government has a road map out of lockdown, which is based on the levels of vaccinations within the state. It includes different stages surrounding the return to schools, gathering with other people and re-aligning with Australia’s national reopening plan. 

Victoria’s goal of rejoining this national plan is due to be reached on or before November 5, with the Economy Trials providing vital evidence surrounding live sports and entertainment. November 5 is three days after the Melbourne Cup.

Premier Daniel Andrews said, according to The Guardian: “Whether you are a racegoer or not, a fan of that sport or not, that’ll be a really important date for every single Victorian and (will) send a message to the rest of the country and the world about the fact that we are open, more open too beyond that, but our road map is absolutely our way out of this. 

“Us as a state and economy and community being open and us having done everything we can now to fight against this virus, having stuck together, having looked out for each other, having got vaccinated, is the most important part.

“These are just a few announcements today and there will be many more in terms of metropolitan Melbourne trials.” 

Image: Mathias P.R. Reding on Unsplash