Walz announces campaign to increase awareness of COVID vaccine, test options during holiday season

Wednesday, Gov. Tim Walz announced a new campaign to increase awareness of COVID-19 vaccine and testing options throughout the state.

The "Celebrate Safely, Minnesota" campaign is in an effort to help Minnesotans access the resources needed to safely celebrate the holidays amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Walz’s office.

Through the campaign this holiday season, state officials are encouraging Minnesotans to:

Meanwhile, Walz announced that Minnesotans 18 and older who receive their vaccine at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport’s community vaccination site at Terminal 2 by Dec. 29 are eligible to win a $200 Sun Country Airlines travel voucher.

Additionally this month, the state is hosting 63 vaccination events, including events at schools for those in the 5-11 age range, non-school community vaccination events, mobile vaccination events and semi-permanent community vaccination events. T

Also this month, the Mall of America is increasing its vaccination capacity to 2,000 shots per day. Walk-in appointments are available and appointments can also be made in advance.

"This virus creates a lot of unknowns, but what we do know is that testing and getting your vaccine and booster are the best ways to protect yourself and those around you," Walz said in a statement. "I’m looking forward to holiday celebrations just like a lot of Minnesotans, but I know I have a personal responsibility to do my part to keep those around me safe—I encourage all Minnesotans to do the same."

MDH Commissioner Jan Malcolm also said, in a statement, "Minnesotans know what to do to protect themselves and their loved ones this holiday season—now we just need them to take action. The state is doing everything we can to give Minnesotans access to tests, vaccines and booster shots, I encourage everyone to take these steps as well as additional precautions, like masking and hand washing, so we can all celebrate safely this holiday season."