NORFOLK, Va. — Longstanding LGBTQ+ nightclub in Norfolk, The Wave, served in a different capacity before opening Saturday night.
"The primary goal was definitely to get shots in arms and get people vaccinated, have them protected against monkeypox so that it doesn't become more than it is in Hampton Roads already," said Kyle Douglas.
Douglas, an employee at The Wave, came up with the idea to hold a free vaccine clinic.
"There are other states, other cities that are already really badly affected by it," he said. "I wanted to make sure we weren't a breeding ground for that and wanted to get ahead of it as much as possible."
"There are so many people who walk through our doors on a Saturday night that I wanted to be able to make sure everyone was safe and had protection and so doing it here, on site, was a no-brainer for us," Douglas added.
Douglas told 13News Now workers with the Virginia Beach Department of Public Health administered 207 shots Saturday.
VBDPH Emergency Coordinator Bob Engle said they had more than 300 to give out on site.
"What we're trying to do is reach out into the community and identify those that are eligible to receive this vaccine, encourage them to get it so that we can help reduce the spread and hopefully eliminate it from the community here in a short term," said Engle.
There have been 302 cases of monkeypox reported across the commonwealth as of August 26, according to a Virginia Department of Health dashboard.
Among the local health districts, Virginia Beach and Hampton have reported the most with 15 each. Norfolk has 13.
Moreover, Douglas hopes others follow their lead in organizing community clinics. He said there are already plans to hold a follow-up vaccination clinic for the second dose in September. People can also get their first shot then.