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What coronavirus precautions are being taken at the San Antonio Rodeo?

Here's what patrons can expect when they attend the rodeo, which is still expected to kick off this month.

SAN ANTONIO — Officials at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo continue working to assuage concerns about holding their event during the pandemic, by letting the public know they’re going above and beyond to ensure safety. KENS 5 was given an inside look at what rodeo fans can expect if they attend.

The first thing attendants will notice is the size; event officials are capping attendance at 45% capacity at the Freeman Coliseum. 

“We’ve shut down our family fair area, we’ve shut down the carnival, we’ve shut down the food court, we’ve shut down the music venues that surround us,” said San Antonio Rodeo CEO Cody Davenport. “We’ve gone back to the basics, it’s just our youth and our sport."

Guests' temperature will be screened twice—once while walking through a tent outside, and again at video kiosks just inside the doors. Anyone with a high temperature will be taken to a cooling down tent before being screened again.

“A lot of people out here are wearing cowboy hats,” said Shauna Vetter, medical board administrative liaison for the rodeo. “If we have a day like it was yesterday where it’s 81 degrees, they’re going to be hot from walking from the parking lot.”

And there’s the show itself, which people will be watching from what officials are calling “pod seating.”

“You have nobody sitting in front of you, behind you, next to you,” Vetter said. “You are in your own little pod.”

Davenport added that every decision they make including the decision not to delay the rodeo comes down to their mission of educating the youth and providing scholarships.

“These kids, they’re working on these projects year-round. And in the world of agriculture, when you work on a project like that, there’s a peak time on all of them,” Davenport said. “Last year we had 21,200 kids, I believe, that we were able to have an impact on their educational goals and their futures. That’s what we’re about here and that’s what we’re going to pull off this year.”