MADRID — Faced with soaring numbers of new coronavirus infections among unvaccinated young people, some Spanish regions are reinstating curbs on nightlife only weeks after dropping them.

Fearing that the surging contagion could strain health care services as stressed employees try to go on summer holidays, health officials in several parts of the country are also rushing to get COVID-19 vaccine shots to people under 30.

Spain’s strict vaccination rollout has so far focused on older, more vulnerable groups, leaving the vaccination of teenagers and people in their 20s for the summer.

So far, 40% of Spain’s 47 million people have been fully vaccinated, one of the highest levels in Europe, but that falls to one in ten vaccinated in the 20-29 age group and a meager 0.7% for those under 20.

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“We have to thank the youth for the extra, longer effort that we have demanded from them, as they are only starting to get vaccinated now,” said Fernando Simón, who coordinates the country’s response to health emergencies.

Simón said Monday there’s a danger that infections among young people spread to vulnerable older groups like those waiting for a second vaccine dose or people not vaccinated at all.

“We are in a complicated situation regarding transmission and we hope that this doesn’t turn into a grave situation at hospitals,” he said.

The 14-day contagion rate Monday among those 20 to 29 was more than three times the national average of 204 new cases per 100,000 residents.

Simón said the delta virus variant that has been blamed for rising infections in other countries like Portugal and Britain is not yet the main driver of new confirmed cases in Spain.

New infections have also spread among Spanish teenagers as a result of trips and parties to celebrate the end of the school year. Thousands have been forced to go into isolation nationwide after more than 1,000 infections were tied to student trips to Spain’s Mallorca islands. At least 700 others have tested positive in mass screenings in the northern Navarra region among students who went to a beach resort last month.

Authorities in Navarra are seeing more than 500 new infections a day, a level not reached since the country’s second virus resurgence in October. In response, they announced that bars and nightclubs will go back to closing at 1 a.m. instead of 3 a.m.

Nightlife will be completely shut down in at least 16 towns in the northern Cantabria region, which leads the nation’s infection tallies.

A spike in coronavirus infections is also hitting the northeastern Catalonia region. Authorities there have invited people over 16 to receive their virus shots after a seven-fold increase of infections in the past two weeks, reaching more than 3,000 new confirmed cases in the past few days.

The rebound in cases has

ARLINGTON, Va. – As the region continues to emerge from the pandemic and more patrons participate in nightlife activities, Arlington County is reminding the public about designated weekend pick-up and drop-off zones in Clarendon. The zones, first launched in May 2018, are designed to facilitate safe travel options and aim to curb illegal practices, such as double parking and stopping in travel lanes, bus stops, bike lanes and crosswalks, to load and unload passengers.

The designated drop-off and pick-up zones in Clarendon will be enforced between Friday and Sunday nights from the hours of 9 p.m. and 3 a.m. Zone areas are:

  • North Highland Street between Wilson Boulevard and 11th Street North; enforced Friday – Sunday
  • Clarendon Boulevard between North Highland Street and Washington Boulevard; enforced Friday – Sunday

Motorists should be on the lookout for ‘No Parking Except 5 Minute Passenger Pick Up and Drop Off’ signs. The Arlington County Police Department will strictly enforce the regulations. A one-week warning period is planned to help the public refamiliarize themselves with the zones, however, vehicles parked in the zone may be ticketed or towed. This is a joint safety project between Arlington County’s Department of Environmental Services (DES) and the Arlington County Police Department.

Tips for a Safe Night Out

The Arlington Restaurant Initiative wants patrons to have a safe night out. Consider these safety tips when enjoying Arlington’s nightlife:

  • Before going out, plan a sober ride home – such as a designated sober driver, rideshare or public transportation
  • Consume alcohol responsibly and know your limits
  • Have a fully charged phone and save important contact numbers
  • Go to places in groups and stay together
  • Cross the street at marked crosswalks and never against a red light
  • Follow the direction of restaurant and security staff
  • Fighting and physical altercations are never the correct answer, walk away and seek assistance, if needed
  • Know where you can find help if you need it. Arlington County Police have a designated detail of officers in nightlife areas on weekend nights.
  • Be mindful of the residential neighborhood around you – do not scream or yell outside and always pick up your trash
About the Arlington Restaurant Initiative 

In an effort to increase safety for patrons and to provide restaurant owners and staff, as well as special event staff, with resources to maximize their safety and viability, the Arlington County Police Department has partnered with County agencies to establish the Arlington Restaurant Initiative (ARI). The goal of ARI is to raise the standards of restaurants that serve alcohol, streamline processes within the County Government and maintain Arlington County as a safe destination for nightlife and entertainment. Contact members of the Arlington Restaurant Initiative at [email protected] or 703-228-7423.

California Academy of Sciences is relaunching NightLife, its in-person after-hours series for people 21 and older, the organization announced Tuesday, May 4.

California Academy of Sciences is resuming its in-person NightLife series for adults. Photo: Kathryn Whitney, California Academy of Sciences

© Provided by San Francisco Chronicle
California Academy of Sciences is resuming its in-person NightLife series for adults. Photo: Kathryn Whitney, California Academy of Sciences

On select Thursdays starting May 13, guests can stay at the San Francisco institution as late as 10 p.m. to visit exhibits including “Venom: Fangs, Stingers, and Spines” and “BigPicture” (which features the winners of a natural photography competition), take in starry (or foggy) vistas from the museum’s living roof, or meet the colorful creatures in the Philippine Coral Reef, all accompanied by special lighting, DJs and craft cocktails.

© Kathryn Whitney

“Now that the Academy has safely reopened its doors, we’re excited to extend hours on Thursday evenings for NightLife guests,” said senior manager of NightLife Jackie Zappala. “This will very much be an experimental year for NightLife, and we encourage guests to come along for the ride.”

California Academy of Sciences is resuming its in-person NightLife series for adults. Photo: Kathryn Whitney, California Academy of Sciences

© Provided by San Francisco Chronicle
California Academy of Sciences is resuming its in-person NightLife series for adults. Photo: Kathryn Whitney, California Academy of Sciences

The academy, which reopened to the public on March 17, is limiting guest capacity to 20% and requiring reservations and timed entries.

Signage and loudspeaker announcements remind visitors about masking and maintaining social distancing, and staff are trained to issue polite reminders when they see unsafe behavior.

Additionally, the academy is allowing eating and drinking only in its cafe and outdoor West Garden.

For those who prefer digital offerings, the academy is continuing its free NightSchool classes on its YouTube and Facebook pages.

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