Immunity incentives sweeten the vaccine deal

May 20, 2021

Alyeska in October.
Credit Sabine Poux/KDLL

In Ohio, there’s a vaccine lottery. Kristy Kreme’s doling out free donuts.

In Alaska, Girdwood’s Alyeska Resort is promising a free day-of lift ticket to anyone who comes to it’s COVID-19 vaccine clinic this Sunday.

The clinic is through the state of Alaska and will be held at the mountain's Daylodge. Alyeska Resort spokesperson Ben Napolitano said getting vaccines in arms is an important step the resort can take to make this summer a good one tourism-wise.

 

"For the local community of Girdwood to have these visitors and to get these people here, we need to be very responsible with what we’re doing," he said. “We want to do everything we can as a community to protect those most at-risk."

Sunday is Alyeska’s last day of the season. The mountain usually isn’t open to skiers this late in the spring. But with all the snow — around 110 inches at the top still — it has stayed open through May.

Alyeska isn’t the only entity trading deals for doses. The Alaska Railroad is incentivizing employees to get vaccinated with a day of paid leave. Railroad spokesperson Tim Sullivan says under 40 percent of the company’s staff is currently vaccinated.

The Department of Health and Social Services is holding its own vaccine clinic at Soldota Creek Park next week and entering vaccinated people to win prizes at a "Sleeves Up for Summer Celebration," the same time as Soldotna's Party in the Park and first Wednesday Market. It's in conjunction with the city of Soldotna and others.

Prizes include kayaks, a grill and an Alaska Airlines voucher. Those who are already vaccinated will also be entered to win, with proof from a vaccine card.

That’s on Wednesday, May 26 between 11 a.m. and 9 p.m.

Alyeska’s clinic is Sunday, May 23 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. Napolitano said they’ll have all three vaccine types available and people can just walk in without an appointment.

"And then once you’re done, we’ll hand you a lift ticket and you can just go out and ski," he said. "The forecast looks really promising. Sunny and high of 62. So May 23 could be a really good day to get your final turns of the season in.”

The mountain is open for skiing and snowboarding Sunday between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.