California is partnering with Six Flags to give $4.5 million worth of free theme park tickets to residents who get the COVID-19 shot, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday as he announced the latest incentive in the state’s “Vax for the Win” program.
Newsom made the announcement at Six Flags Magic Mountain a day after California eased its coronavirus restrictions and, in celebration, held the final vaccine lottery for $1.5 million prizes. The drawing took place at Universal Studios Hollywood.
In this latest promotion, the state will begin distributing 50,000 free tickets to Six Flags theme parks on Wednesday to residents who receive at least one dose at participating clinics operated by community organizations, according to a news release from the governor’s office. The giveaway is meant to support areas hit hardest by the pandemic and is available while supplies last.
“We’re fully reopening California’s economy, but we’re not letting up on our efforts to get more Californians vaccinated — especially in our hardest hit communities — so we can all safely get back to the activities and places we love, including our state’s iconic landmarks,” Newsom said.
Many of the organizations chosen in the state are located near Six Flags theme or water parks, including Magic Mountain and Hurricane Harbor. The other two are Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo and Hurricane Harbor Concord.
“Six Flags is proud to support efforts to vaccinate more Californians, particularly in underserved communities,” Six Flags President and CEO Mike Spanos said. “We are committed to our local communities through ticket donations and having served as vaccination sites across the country.”
The tickets will be good at all four locations through Sept. 6.
Initially conceived last month to push more people to get the jab, the “Vax for the Win” incentive program has resulted in California becoming the lone state to achieve a week-over-week vaccination rate increase, according to the release. The most recent figures show a rise of 22%.
The nation’s most-populous state now routinely has one of the lowest coronavirus case and transmission rates in the U.S. Virus hospitalizations have also dipped to the lowest levels since March 2020, when the stay-at-home order was first enacted.
To date, more than 70% of adults in the state have received at lost one shot in California.
“Getting every eligible Californian vaccinated is how we maintain our incredible progress and bring our state roaring back from this pandemic,” Newsom stressed.
On top of the theme park tickets, California’s “Vax for the Win” program included selecting 40 vaccinated residents to win a combined total of $16.5 million in cash prizes: 10 for the grand prize amount of $1.5 million a piece and 30 for $50,000 each. It is also providing $50 gift cards to the first 2 million people who started the vaccine process beginning May 27.
And earlier this week, the governor announced yet another incentive to boost the state’s beleaguered travel and tourism industry by offering six lucky winners the chance to win a “California Dream Vacation” package on July 1.
The destinations include Anaheim, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Palm Springs.
The drawing is open to all California residents ages 18 and up, and anyone who has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will automatically be entered.
For more details about the Six Flags giveaway, including a list of participating clinics, click or tap here.