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Tampa’s Gasparilla Music Festival will require COVID-19 vaccination or negative test

The policy update was announced ahead of the Oct. 1-3 event.
Hip-hop icon Nas, shown here performing in Las Vegas in 2012, will be one of the headliners for the Gasparilla Music Festival.
Hip-hop icon Nas, shown here performing in Las Vegas in 2012, will be one of the headliners for the Gasparilla Music Festival. [ AL POWERS | Al Powers/Invision/AP ]
Published Sep. 3
Updated Sep. 3

Gasparilla Music Festival announced on social media today that attendees will be required to show negative COVID-19 tests or proof of vaccination before entering the event happening Oct. 1-3 at Tampa’s Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park.

The annual festival’s policy update is the latest in a trend of such requirements, including at all shows promoted by Live Nation after Oct. 4 and at pop heartthrob Harry Styles’ Oct. 10 show at Amalie Arena.

Florida law says businesses can’t require customers to show proof of vaccination. But adding an option for a negative test is different, and the governor’s office has acknowledged that the combination makes this rule lawful. The loophole allows event organizers to deny entry due to the lack of a negative test, not vaccination status.

Hip-hop icon Nas, Grammy-nominated electronic pop duo Sylvan Esso and Southern rock jam band Gov’t Mule are headlining the Gasparilla Music Festival.

Related: Gasparilla Music Festival lineup: Nas, Sylvan Esso, Gov’t Mule coming to Tampa.

More updates will be provided as the festival approaches. For more information, visit gasparillamusic.com.

Times staff writer Sharon Kennedy Wynne contributed to this story.