New Jersey will offer wine, state park season passes and dinner with the governor and his wife as incentives to get people vaccinated against coronavirus.
The incentives form part of “Operation Jersey Summer,” with Gov. Phil Murphy looking to get as many people aged 12 and older vaccinated as quickly as possible. He has previously said he wants 70% of the state’s adult population fully vaccinated by June.
The wine giveaway – nicknamed “Uncork the Vaccination" – applies to people who receive their first dose of vaccine in the month of May. By showing their vaccine card, people will be able to receive a free glass of wine at one of nine participating wineries throughout the state. It’s similar to the state’s “Shot and a Beer” program.
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The “Vax and Visit” program will see the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection offer a free season state parks pass – good for entrance to any state park from Memorial Day weekend to the end of the calendar year – to any resident who has received at least one shot by July 4. Passes normally cost $50, and anyone who has already been vaccinated and bought a pass can apply to get their money reimbursed.
Residents who get vaccinated before the end of May, including anyone who has received their shots in the preceding five-plus months, will also be eligible to have dinner with Murphy and first lady Tammy Snyder Murphy. The winner will be able to bring a guest and have dinner with the couple at their choice of Drumthwacket, the official governor’s residence in Princeton, or at the governor’s shore home at Island Beach State Park.
The dinner will also include a private tour of the house and the grounds.
Murphy said more than 3.9 million people had been fully vaccinated in the state as of Wednesday. Figures from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention show 44.6% of the state's population have been fully vaccinated.