Denton County kicked its COVID-19 vaccination efforts into high-gear Tuesday with a massive drive-thru clinic at Texas Motor Speedway.
The county vaccinated 9,100 people Tuesday, with the goal of serving 30,000 by the end of the week.
From just after sunrise and into the afternoon, Texas Motor Speedway lived up to its name.
“Surprisingly fast,” recipient Don Preston said of the vaccination process. "Very efficient, very good. Communicated well. Great job."
Those with appointments through the county were in and out in less than 30 minutes.
“I was thinking it was going to be maybe two-hour wait, three-hour wait, but pleasantly surprised,” Donald Onunga said.
An estimated 400 county fire and medical crews, as well as volunteers, guided those with appointments through 16 lanes for their shot at keeping COVID-19 away.
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“We are very happy that this has been organized so well,” Hummi Bedri said.
The only lines at a standstill inside the parking lot were those waiting 15 minutes post-vaccine in case of an allergic reaction.
“I couldn’t have asked for anything better,” Darlene Smith said. “This was great. Even though it was 30 miles over here, I’d do it again any day of the week.”
Denton County judge Andy Eads credited the county’s strict appointment requirement among its keys to a successful effort.
“We do not schedule any appointments unless we have the vaccine in hand from the state of Texas and that is critical,” he said. “To see people pull up, many who have been in isolation for many, many months, living in fear. To see finally, see light at the end of the tunnel and to get their vaccination, it’s a very emotional experience.”
The county said that as it receives more vaccines, their efforts at TMS will expand to vaccinate even more Texans.
There is not residency requirement to register with Denton County for the COVID—19 vaccine.
TMS will be back open on Thursday and Friday for those in the qualified groups with an appointment.
Volunteers are still urgently needed to help in the coming days and weeks of the vaccination distribution.
A medical background is not required. The county's Medical Reserve Corps volunteers greet the public and help guide traffic during the event.
If you would like to help, click here.