Gov. Roy Cooper visits vaccine clinic at NC Zoo


ASHEBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — As North Carolina sees a decrease in COVID-19 cases and a slowdown in vaccinations, Governor Roy Cooper has teased a series of incentives to get the unvaccinated vaccinated.  

On Friday, the governor toured and met with front-line workers at a mass vaccination site outside the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro.  

The site has vaccinated several people and has started an incentive that if people get vaccinated, then they will receive a free coupon to the zoo.  

Gov. Cooper said there are more incentives to come.

“We’re watching very carefully what promotions across the county and examining the data to see what actually works,”  he said.

This could include sweepstakes, lotteries or gift cards to encourage people to get vaccinated.  

As of Friday, 52% of people 18 and up have at least one shot, while 48% are fully vaccinated. 

The incentive for free admission to the zoo has worked for some, but its success rests on if people are over their hesitancies. 

While Gov. Cooper toured the facility, Barbara Antonow arrived to get her one dose Johnson and Johnson shot.  

She told Gov. Cooper that this is something she has put off but finally felt peace about it.

“You’ve got to feel peace about it or you shouldn’t do it. But I do feel peace about it today,” she said.

The state wants to replicate her story, while Gov. Cooper has said he feels we can reach two-thirds of adults vaccinated by the summer if more stories like Antonow are shared.

“I believe the rest of the population is going to come behind,” he said.

As the state looks to increase vaccinations, it has also warned unvaccinated individuals for additional risks they may face as we eye the Memorial Day weekend.  

This year, those who have not received their shot should wear a mask.

“Last year, a lot of unvaccinated people were obeying the law and were wearing a mask,” Gov. Cooper explained. “I think more of them now, since there’s not a mandatory order, will not be wearing them. That gives you more reason to go and get a vaccine.”

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