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Some COVID-19 vaccination sites in Lake, McHenry counties begin transitioning to walk-in appointments

Lake County Board Chair Sandy Hart speaks during a January 27, 2021 press conference at the Lake County Fairgrounds vaccination site. | Photo via State of Illinois.

As supply begins to exceed demand, some COVID-19 vaccinations sites in Lake and McHenry counties are beginning to transition to serve walk-ins.

The Lake County Health Department announced on Friday that the Lake County Fairgrounds site, located at 1060 East Peterson Road in Grayslake, will offer walk-in vaccinations starting Saturday.

The walk-in hours for the fairgrounds are from 12-3 p.m. on Mondays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and 2-5 p.m. on Wednesdays.

The McHenry County Health Department also announced on Friday that their Crystal Lake and McHenry mass vaccination clinics would begin accepting walk-ins starting Tuesday.

Both health departments said that walk-in appointments will be subject to vaccine supplies and appointments are still encouraged to avoid being turned away.

All Illinois residents ages 16 and older, even those who are not U.S. Citizens, can get the COVID-19 vaccine for free. Minors ages 16-17 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to receive their vaccine.

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“We have finally reached the point of having sufficient vaccine supply in Lake County,” said Mark Pfister, Executive Director of the Lake County Health Department.

“If you have an opening in your afternoon, stop by the Fairgrounds, bring along your family, and get your shots. If you’re hoping for a more normal summer, don’t delay—the sooner we all get vaccinated, the sooner we can get back to doing the things we enjoy,” Pfister said.

The McHenry County Health Department said that they have seen a drop in vaccine administration that went from 96% the week of April 13 down to 65% the week of April 27.

“We want to make access to the vaccines as easy as possible so that people who haven’t yet received the vaccine can make the choice to join the McHenry County residents who have received at least one dose of the vaccine,” said McHenry County Health Department Administrator Melissa Adamson.

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“These vaccines are a powerful tool in our fight against the COVID-19 virus and our collective goal to return to a sense of normalcy, and opening to walk-up clinics is another means to help us reach this goal,” Adamson said.

Lake County residents who would prefer having an assigned time for their shot can schedule an appointment on the Lake County AllVax Portal or call 847-377-8130.

AllVax appointments are available at the Lake County Fairgrounds and the Regional Vaccination Site at 102 West Water Street in Waukegan.

McHenry County residents who would like to schedule an appointment can do so by visiting the state’s registration form or by calling 815-334-4045.

Thousands of appointments are also available at other community vaccination sites found on the State of Illinois’ Vaccine Locator.