BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Ahead of a series of family concerts, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra said it will begin accepting negative PCR tests for entry into Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, accommodating children who are not yet eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

The new policy goes into effect on Nov. 4. Previously, proof of vaccination was required to attend concerts.

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The orchestra also announced beverage sales will return on Nov. 4. Patrons will still be required to wear facemasks indoors, except when they are actively drinking.

“With this guidance, and with time for all staff to adjust to checking proof of vaccinations effectively and efficiently, we are confident that now is the appropriate time for us to take the next step in our responsible return,” said Tonya McBride Robles, vice president and COO of the orchestra. “This includes welcoming back our youngest audience members, as well as those who are unable to be vaccinated due to religious or medical reasons.”

Test results must come from a sample taken within 72 hours of a performance, the orchestra said. Rapid tests are not accepted.

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Visitors are required to show an ID matching the name on their proof of vaccination or negative test results.

School IDs, passports or other forms of official government identification will be accepted for children younger than 18 years old. If a child does not have an ID, an accompanying adult must confirm their vaccination card or test results, the BSO said.

The orchestra is scheduled to play its first family concert on Dec. 4. The program, named Winter Wonderland, includes songs from Disney’s “Frozen,” Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker Suite” and other favorites.

The shows “Cirque Nutcracker” and “Holiday Spectacular” are scheduled for later in December.

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On Oct. 28, the BSO will perform a family friendly concert, titled “Thrills and Chills,” and stream it online.

CBS Baltimore Staff