Nashville SC, Grand Ole Opry to lift most capacity restrictions in May

MLS Inter Miami Nashville SC Soccer
Posted at 10:49 AM, May 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-07 23:53:26-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Most capacity restrictions at two major Nashville venues will be lifted by the end of May as the city moves forward with its reopening plan.

Both Nashville Soccer Club and the Grand Ole Opry announced the updates Friday as Metro prepares to lift all of its COVID restrictions, except the indoor mask mandate, on Friday, May 14.

The Grand Ole Opry said it will open up weekly performances to full capacity for the first time in more than a year, beginning on May 14. That night’s show will feature Opry members Lorrie Morgan, the Oak Ridge Boys and more.

Opry officials said it will continue to follow enhanced COVID-19 health and safety protocols throughout the spring, including:

  • “Mandatory masks for all guests as well Opry House operations and production staff, per Metro Nashville Health”
  • “Enhanced cleaning practices” Click here for more information.

Additionally, Gaylord Opryland Resort said the outdoor portion of its water attraction SoundWaves is opening on May 15.

Starting May 23, Nashville SC said fans will be allowed at Nissan Stadium at near full capacity. Masks will no longer be required while outdoors at Nissan Stadium. However, face coverings are still “strongly encouraged.”

The club said per Major League Soccer’s COVID restrictions, seats located in the lower bowl behind designated media positions and player areas – such as benches, tunnels and warm-up areas – will remain unavailable.

“For those Season Ticket Members who prefer to remain in a masked and socially distanced environment as the City of Nashville reopens, Nashville SC will work with them to provide alternative seating options where social distancing and masks will be mandatory,” the club said Friday.

Nashville SC said it will continue to review these procedures on a game by game basis, in cooperation with Metro health leaders, MLS and Nissan Stadium.

It's been more than 600 days since baseball was played at First Horizon Park, and officials with the Nashville Sounds are also anxious to welcome fans back.

For opening day on May 11, and home games on May 12 and 13, the ballpark will be at near a 40 percent capacity level. In conjunction with Metro health guidelines, on May 14, First Horizon Park will be near 100 percent capacity.

"We’re just excited to be one of the first outdoor venues to have a lot more people and we are going to make sure people are safe, having a good time and following the rules," said Taylor Fisher, Director of Sales for the Nashville Sounds.

Officials said safety will continue to be a top priority. The Sounds will follow Major League Baseball’s policy of a player safety buffer zone that restricts the usage of front rows of sections closest to the playing field, dugouts and bullpens. The Sounds will also keep four socially distanced sections for the entire 2021 season. Masks are required when entering and walking around the ballpark, and the entire park will go cashless.

Metro health leaders announced the city's capacity updates last month, saying that as of midnight on May 14, there will be no restrictions on gathering size or business capacity. However, face masks will still be required while indoors.