More than 3,000 individuals received the COVID-19 vaccine at the Plymouth Cultural Center in March and April, according to city records.
Rite Aid approached Plymouth officials in early March, when there were 100 extra COVID vaccines that had to be used before the expiration date. City officials immediately arranged for the vaccines to be taken to Tonquish Creek Manor, which houses seniors.
Rite Aid leaders called on the city again in March with an extra 30 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine which were distributed to those who were available on the same day that second doses were given to the initial group at Tonquish Manor.
Then, things got serious, officials said. Rite Aid officials asked Plymouth to host a two-day clinic with 1,200 vaccinations available.
City Information Technology Director Tom Alexandris immediately set up an online signup site, securing volunteers including city staff members, their family members and volunteers from the Plymouth Rotary Club. City Manager Paul Sincock and Plymouth Recreation Director Steve Anderson were tasked with the logistics at the cultural center during the clinic.
“We know what we do well,” said Sincock. “When given an opportunity to help out the community and do our part to wipe out this pandemic, we put our organizing skills to use, making sure everything runs smoothly and that everyone feels welcome and comfortable.”
On the morning of the April 15-16 first clinic, Rite Aid realized the efficient setup could accommodate more than the 600 doses per day initially planned, and asked Plymouth to accept more appointments for inoculations.
Nearly 2,000 people were vaccinated during those two days, Sincock said.
He added that there were lots of satisfied customers on their way to being fully vaccinated and the city then scheduled another clinic April 27 and 28 when approximately 900 people received a vaccine.
“It's part of what makes Plymouth Plymouth,” said Mayor Oliver Wolcott. “We are welcoming, we think creatively when there's a challenge in front of us, and we're eager to put partnerships to work.