Mandate for COVID-19 vaccine or negative test at Arizona venues goes into effect this week

Several Arizona music venues will begin requiring proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test to see a performance starting Monday, Sept. 20.

As for Sunday night at the Rebel Lounge, dozens of people were packed into the venue to enjoy a concert.

This was the first time in a couple of years that many have been able to enjoy the scene.

"So exciting. Glad we can finally go back to shows," said concert-goers Mia and Michael Melvin.

Starting tomorrow, the Rebel Lounge, along with other venues, will be requiring vaccination cards or a negative test.

"Really most of that was artist-driven. So many of the artists touring this fall wanted to know what we were doing. It's been a conversation for the last few months and the easiest way was just a bunch of us venues got together and said we're all going to do it," said Stephen Chilton, owner of the Rebel Lounge.

Chilton says, for the most part, response to the mandate has been positive.

"Most people have been super supportive of it. A lot of people saying it makes them confident to buy tickets, some that were on the fence. We've obviously got some pushback but really overwhelmingly positive."

Those lined up for the show on Sunday night say they have no problem with the Rebel Lounge requiring vaccinations.

"I'm perfectly fine with that and I think it's a good idea," said Daniel Cos of Tempe.

"I feel like for concert venues you know, it's ok. It's a private business so I feel like they are entitled to ask whatever they want of people choosing to enter the business," said Mia Melvin.

And Chilton says for him, the benefit is getting more artists from across the country to perform, helping him and audience members feel safe.

"Feels good and like every night we're hearing from people say, ‘This is my first concert since COVID,’ so it's like every night and that's fun seeing people excited and happy to see music again is the best part."

On Aug. 16, 15 locations in the Valley, Tucson and Flagstaff, announced vaccination cards would be required to get into a show.

Venues requiring COVID-19 vaccine and/or proof of negative test:

  • 191 Toole, Tucson
  • Celebrity Theatre, Phoenix
  • Club Congress * (Inside Only), Tucson
  • Crescent Ballroom, Phoenix
  • Fox Tucson Theatre, Tucson
  • The Marquee Theatre, Tempe
  • The Nash, Phoenix
  • The Nile Theater, Mesa
  • The Orpheum Theater, Flagstaff
  • The Rialto Theatre, Tucson
  • The Rebel Lounge, Phoenix
  • The Rhythm Room, Phoenix
  • Valley Bar, Phoenix
  • Walter Where?House, Phoenix
  • West Side Blues Club * (Vaccine Only), Glendale
  • Yucca Tap Room, Tempe
  • Yucca North, Flagstaff

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