As we look to the future, we are optimistic that with proper health and safety precautions, this will be our most magical event yet. We have a Covid-19 vaccination requirement for our guests and feel strongly that this is appropriate for a gathering of our size and the only ethical choice we can make. Part of being a community is having standards, and basic respect and care for your fellow con-goers is a standard that is not up for debate for us.
We require all of our attendees, presenters, staff, vendors and volunteers to be fully vaccinated AND up to date for Covid-19 using United States Center for Disease Control definitions and standards. Please see this link for more information on what “fully vaccinated” and “up to date” mean to us: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/stay-up-to-date.html
If you don’t meet these requirements and any future requirements put forth by the CDC for full protection, regardless of your age, you are NOT fully vaccinated and up to date and will not be allowed to attend our event for the health and safety of all of us. There are some folks at higher risk of serious illness during this time and we have to choose to protect the health of those folks with every tool we have.
The city of Stamford has lifted their mask mandate but we are keeping ours. We will have a few exceptions to this masking policy involving presenters while teaching, dungeon while playing and eating. Please see our event app for the full policy language. The information in the 1/28/22 update is still valid, other than the Stamford masking mandate. Everyone will be given a N95 non-surgical masks, cloth masks are not permitted.
Reminder: Everyone that is eligible must have been vaxxed AND boosted prior to the event.
When we first started ticketing for Tethered Together 2022 in October 2021, our initial policy stated that we reserve the right to add additional health and safety measures for our event depending on city, state and United States public health recommendations at the time of our event.
We are doing that now.
These policies are in effect immediately.
This is what you can plan for.
Currently the City of Stamford is under an indoor mask mandate, which means that we are too since we would like to run our event. We are uncertain if it will last through March but we plan to provide a KN94 mask for each Tetherfriend as a forgettable party favor of an unforgettable time regardless. You are also welcome to bring your own equivalent masks, and we have had a generous donor also supply some N95 masks as well. You’ve got choices, and all of them should have a decent particle filter.
There have also been some developments in Covid-19 vaccination recommendations and definitions recently. There is a small but important distinction between “fully vaccinated” and “up to date on your Covid-19 vaccinations” (click here to read specifics). We are changing from requiring that folks are fully vaccinated to instead requiring that we are all up to date with our Covid-19 vaccinations. Why? Because we think you are all great, and the scientific data to date shows clearly that folks have the best outcomes facing current prevailing Covid-19 strain best when up to date on their Covid vaccinations. Immunity wanes over time, and we believe this is one part of gathering responsibly during this time. It is not the only part.
This change to require that attendees are up to date on their Covid-19 vaccinations means that some folks who have completed their initial series (who are considered “fully vaccinated”) will need a booster before they are considered “up to date” and ready for Tethered.
- The only folks who won’t need a booster are the folks who have completed their primary Covid-19 vaccine series within the last five months because they aren’t eligible for the booster yet.
- If you have been doing everything you are eligible to be doing, you are doing it right and we are so excited to see you and share space and air with you!
- If you are not fully vaccinated and up to date, you may still have time to catch up but for the love of kink and circus arts and your personal enjoyment of the second weekend in March, please don’t wait!
Speaking of waiting, it’s pretty clear that while the current wave of Covid-19 is decreasing rapidly right now, a small but significant amount will still be floating around for a long time to come so we aren’t planning to wait for it all to disappear in order to ever see our friends again.
Since Covid-19 infection is a persistent concern, we want everyone to feel motivated and empowered to know their Covid-19 status before the event! Knowing your status is sexy, and we strongly suggest that folks take an at-home rapid Covid-19 test prior to arrival at the event at minimum AND every day if they want to really impress us. We will not be providing rapid tests; please bring your own. Rapid tests really are the best ones for this – the current variant of Covid-19 spreads rapidly so the long turnaround times and variable availability for PCR testing isn’t useful to us. Also, with laboratory PCR testing (which is highly sensitive), it is also possible to test positive for up to three months after infection and it’s untenable for us to track every single person’s personal situation there. A rapid positive means you are likely to be contagious right then and there, which is what you need to know to manage your risk and respect the folks around you.
We are not testing at the door because we just don’t want the hygiene issue created by a room full of folks taking their masks off and putting things up their noses. Nobody wants this. Please use your own room (or car, or crash space, etc.) for this if you choose to (and you should – there’s a sweet prize for you). Snap a picture with your phone of your results and show us at the official Covid-19 testing booth to get a special badge ribbon from us to you. You could be “Covid-Tested, Tethered Approved” and we hope you will be for all of us!
There isn’t anything that we could say today that couldn’t be proven completely wrong tomorrow (a theme of event planning in these times), but what we are trying our best to do is honor the commitment we made when we decided to run this event – we will do everything reasonable, sensible and accessible to us to create a sexy and safer environment for folks to gather. Getting fully vaccinated and then continuing to be up to date is something we should all do anyway, and rapid test availability and accessibility is improving daily. The government is willing to send four tests per household (defined as postal address) without cost that will likely arrive before Tethered if you order them soon, drive-thru pharmacy rapid tests are free of charge and same day for results, and some insurance companies are also starting to reimburse for costs or distribute tests. In the interest of full disclosure, Ozma tried the last one themselves and it was a garbage fire, but they have six weeks to somehow get two packs of tests to put in their luggage and they are excited to do so because it means they can open up their catsuit drawer again and you can too!