COVID-19: Vernon, B.C., bar launches prize draw to encourage vaccination

Click to play video: 'Vernon pub aims to encourage COVID-19 vaccination with prize draw' Vernon pub aims to encourage COVID-19 vaccination with prize draw
WATCH: As the drive to vaccinate most Canadians against COVID-19 continues, an Okanagan business is trying to do what it can to encourage immunization. The Vernon eatery is offering a prize draw for those who've had at least one dose. – May 19, 2021

There have been a host of vaccine-related promotions offered across North America aimed at encouraging COVID-19 immunization.

Now a Vernon, B.C. restaurant, owned by a local eye doctor, is jumping on that trend and hoping free food can help boost the vaccine drive.

Customers at The Roster Sports Club Bar and Grill, with proof of a COVID-19 vaccination, can enter to win a pound of chicken wings each week for six months.

“If we are able to push someone who is on the fence in the vaccine direction or just simply bring awareness to vaccines for people who may be busy with other things, then that’s the goal of the promotion,” said owner Dr. Hussein Hollands.

Read more: COVID-19: Interior Health asking residents to register for vaccine shots

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Although the restaurant just launched the promo, it’s already generating lots of calls.

“A few people said, ‘You may have some backlash, but we are so happy with it. Just carry on,'” said Hollands.

Interior Health is among those giving the initiative the thumbs up.

“Whatever we can do to motivate people to get the vaccine is good,” said the region’s chief medical health officer, Dr. Albert de Villers.

Read more: B.C. reports 8 more COVID-19 deaths, 521 new cases, expands vaccine registration to youth

“I would caution, we shouldn’t only eat wings,” de Villers added with a smile.

In general, Interior Health is hoping the public will help promote the vaccine drive.

The health authority suggests once you’re vaccinated, you should tell your friends.

“If you see that everybody else around you has got the vaccine, you see what the vaccine actually does…and you know that 70-80 percent of your friends have got the vaccine, that usually motivates most people as well,” said de Villiers.

Read more: Vaccine wristbands handed out for COVID-19 hot spot in Surrey, B.C.

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The region’s chief medical health officer said currently the vaccine registration is going well.

“Things are still going full tilt at this stage. We are still getting people in. We are still running our clinics,” de Villiers said.

Back at the restaurant, the vaccine promo has patrons talking.

“I don’t care if it just affects one person. That’s one more person vaccinated. That’s great,” said restaurant customer Glenna Cameron.

The prize draw is at the start of July.

Vaccine registration is currently open to all adults in British Columbia.

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Health Canada says Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine can now be stored in a fridge for a month – May 19, 2021

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