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Minnesota community vaccination sites now taking walk-ins

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Vaccine-eligible Minnesotans can walk in for a COVID-19 shot without an appointment at the state’s Community Vaccination Program locations effective immediately, the governor’s office announced Friday.

“We want Minnesotans to pile in the car, walk in to a state site and get the whole family vaccinated,” Gov. Tim Walz said in a statement.

Walk-ins for Minnesotans age 16 and older are now accepted at the state sites in Bloomington at the Mall of America, St. Paul at the Roy Wilkins Auditorium, Lino Lakes and Oakdale. Walk-ins for Minnesotans 18 and up are now accepted at the Mankato, Duluth, Rochester and St. Cloud sites. The federally-supported State Fairgrounds site is not currently accepting walk-ins.

The state is encouraging parents and guardians to join their 16- and 17-year-olds and get vaccinated at the same time. Community Vaccination Program sites can’t vaccinate 16- or 17-year-olds without parental or guardian consent, which can be provided at the location or during pre-registration for appointments made online at the state’s Vaccine Connector site.

Minnesota will lift nearly all its COVID-19 restrictions just before Memorial Day weekend and drop its statewide mask requirement no later than July 1, Walz announced Thursday. The mask mandate could go away even sooner once 70% of residents age 16 and older get their first dose of vaccine.