Historic Gaslamp Quarter moving ahead with NYE celebrations

Some worry of area becoming COVID super-spreader
gaslamp quarter sign
Posted at 5:15 PM, Dec 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-30 20:29:57-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- Thousands of people will be going to San Diego's Historic Gaslamp Quarter to welcome in the new year. But with Omicron cases on the rise, many are worried about the area becoming a super-spreader.

The eve of New Year's Eve is fairly quiet at the Gaslamp Quarter, but soon enough, it is expected to be packed.

"We are all welcoming everyone for New Year's at the Gaslamp," Michael Trimble, Executive Director of the Gaslamp Quarter Association, said.

Trimble said there are dozens of special events planned for folks to ring in the new year, and they are going big to make up for last year's cancellations.

"It's hard to have big parties when your businesses are closed," Trimble said.

Restaurants are having special dinners, and clubs are hosting big parties. But unlike New York's Time Square Ball Drop, where organizers have capped the event to only 15,000 vaccinated visitors, of the standard 58,000 capacity, San Diego Hard Rock Cafe's Rooftop party is expecting 2,000 people, which is the building's maximum capacity. According to White House Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anthony Fauci, this is not a good idea.

"When you are talking about a New Year's Eve party, where you have 30, 40, 50 people celebrating, you do not know the status of the vaccination. I would recommend strongly, stay away from that this year," Dr. Fauci said earlier this week on CNN.

But Trimble said each business would be diligently following all safety protocols. Plus, with cooperation from the visitors themselves to follow social distancing, Trimble said he is sure that New Year's Eve at the Gaslamp will be a safe and enjoyable experience.

"I think it's all about personal responsibility as an individual who wants to go out in public," Trimble said. "If you're feeling comfortable wearing your mask, please do that. And if you want to bring your vaccination card, please do that, but that's not required."

Before heading out, guests are encouraged to read through the venue's website for specific covid protocols. Click HERE for details.