Gov. Phil Murphy announces and executive order this week increasing capacity limits for large sporting events. Limited spectators will be allowed at collegiate sporting events, mirroring last week’s announcement on youth sporting events.
“As our COVID-19 metrics continue to trend in the right direction and as we continue our aggressive vaccination effort, we believe we can safely take this step,” said Murphy. “We have always strived to make accommodations wherever safely possible, be it with religious services, sporting events, entertainment venues, or in other sectors. I am pleased that we are able to increase these limits today and hopeful that the numbers continue to point in the right direction for further reopening steps.”
Effective immediately, indoor and outdoor collegiate sports practices and competitions may allow up to two parents or guardians per each participating athlete. Even including this limited number of parents and guardians, the total number of individuals at an indoor practice or competition cannot exceed 35% of the capacity of the room, and any outdoor space needs to accommodate all attendees with appropriate room for social distancing. Collegiate athletic conferences retain the discretion to impose stricter protocols regarding spectators, including for events that take place in large venues.
Starting March 1, Large sports with a fixed seating capacity of 5,000 or more will be permitted to host a number of patrons and members of the public equal to 10% of capacity indoors and 15% of capacity outdoors. Facilities that host sporting event events must ensure that all attendees at the event remain six feet apart from other attendees, except that individuals who purchase or reserve tickets together may be seated together. Attendees will also be required to wear masks within the facility, except when eating or drinking.