The word jab — as in an injection and also a quick boxing punch — had a double meaning at an event near the White House on Saturday.
It was a sweaty few hours at Black Lives Matter Plaza — and that was even before the workouts started and the go-go truck showed up.
As the country opens up again amid the COVID pandemic, D.C. continues its efforts to get folks moving and vaccinated.
But the date, June 5, 2021, didn’t slip past without notice.
“I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge that today is the one year anniversary of our mayor walking down here and painting the street to recognize that Black lives do matter,” said Shawn Townsend, director of the Mayor’s Office of Nightlife and Culture.
Last June, things were so much different — with the city and nation deep in throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, along with protests after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
This June, “the focus is vaccinations,” Townsend said.
There was a pop up vaccination clinic with choices, Townsend said — Pfizer and Moderna versions of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Also other events like workout classes — which included a boxing workout with plenty of jabs and crosses — a yoga mat giveaway, and a go-go band.
“This event is something that we need to get people, to encourage them…to get out into the fresh air for one thing, to get fit. A lot of us have put on what I call the COVID 25–well 50,” Kim Coleman laughed. Coleman was part of the team working with CORE—Community Organized Relief Effort—at the pop up vaccination site.
So far, according to D.C.’s coronavirus information website, more than half of all residents are fully or partially vaccinated. The goal—to get those numbers up through events “that are incentives to make sure that we are doing everything that we can to think outside of the box to get people vaccinated,” Townsend said.