[Minnesota] Minnesota United Football Club game in the time of COVID at Allianz Field (April 2021 Experience)

What is it like to go to a Minnesota United (Minnesota Loons) game in the 2021 season at Allianz Field? What precautions are they taking? Are they enforcing the restrictions?
Allianz Field is the relatively new Minnesota United Football Club's stadium (Minnesota professional soccer team) and, after resting for the 2020 season (for obvious reasons), it's open again now for fans (at a limited capacity).
(Guest post thanks to my parents. Look forward to one about the Minnesota Twins at Target Field coming soon.)

Mask policies:

Fans are back at Allianz Field in St. Paul, home of Minnesota United Football Club, but only at 25-percent capacity. The team’s covid policies kick in even before entering the grounds. Fans are told to don a mask when leaving their vehicles and masks are required at all times in the stadium except when “actively eating or drinking” in seats.

Parking and Transportation:

Prepaid and game-day parking passes for nearby lots are available for $20 to $30, but no cash is accepted. If you prepay for a spot, the parking pass appears as a QR code on the team’s app along with you tickets. All the lots are within a few blocks of Allianz Field. Parking at the State Fairgrounds with a shuttle bus ride to the stadium isn’t offered this year. Packing people into school buses for the short ride to the stadium wouldn’t allow for social distancing.

With the reduced crowd, the normal Snelling and University gridlock is gone. Still, there are plenty of St. Paul police officers directing traffic and helping pedestrians cross the busy streets to the parking lots. 

If you have easy access to the Green Line light rail, that’s the easier way to get in and out of the neighborhood.

Pre-game process:

Before you can accessing tickets, fans must complete a covid screening assessment in the app on the day of the game. Three of the four gates are open for fan entry with fourth set aside for staff. Fans enter through the northwest, southwest and northeast gates.

Social Distancing:

There’s plenty of room to social distance on the concourse because of the reduced capacity and the food and drink stands, where lines crowd the walkway, are shut down. Food options are really limited. All the popup food stands are closed. Those places offered a wide variety of international choices. Only the main concessions stands are open offering the predictable hotdogs, hamburgers, pizza slices, chicken fingers and pretzels. Concession payments are credit or debit only.

Section signage in the stands has never been great. Because of the ticketing scheme for covid, many fans are sitting in different locations than their former season ticket spots. There’s only a small section number on the stairway railing facing each section. As a result, there’s more than the usual amount of milling around because people end up in the wrong place and have to move.

In summary:

Overall, the team has done a thorough job with covid policies, signs and enforcement. On the concourse everybody as wearing a mask. Once seated, compliance was not so good. Seats are assigned in groups of two or four with plenty of space all around.

The Loons have two more home games in mid May and then a month on the road before returning to St. Paul on June 23. If the current vaccination and case trends continue, it may be possible for a loosening of capacity restrictions by then.

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