As vaccinations for COVID-19 continue to proceed across Wisconsin, life is getting closer to returning to normal. As of today, the Wisconsin Department of Health reports that 44.5% of Wisconsin residents have received one dose of the vaccine, and 37.6% have completed their vaccine series (one or two doses, depending on vaccine, plus two weeks passed since the last dose). In addition, the Brewers have played their first month of the season safely, with the team also announcing that their personnel reached the 85% threshold to ease restrictions. The team is taking the next step towards full attendance again, announcing today that they will allow 50% capacity at home games starting this Saturday after the city of Milwaukee updated their health guidelines.
So far this season, fans have responded well to being re-opened to fan attendance. In 16 home games this season, the Brewers have had at least 10,000 fans at every game this season. The peak attendance was on Saturday, May 1 vs. the Dodgers, which had an attendance of 12,139 for that game. The lowest attendance was on Wednesday, April 14, when 10,598 fans attended a weekday afternoon game against the Cubs.
The Brewers are 10th in average attendance in MLB this season, averaging 11,392 fans per game. 14 teams have averaged over 10,000 fans per game, with 4 above 15,000. Both Texas teams lead the league in attendance, with the Rangers averaging 25,837 per game and the Astros at 18,587 per game. Texas is one of the few states that has removed all restrictions statewide, though businesses can still implement their own restrictions.
With capacity increasing to 50%, that would suggest the Brewers can bring in over 20,000 fans per game. American Family Field’s capacity is listed at 41,900, so half of that would be 20,950. How many fans will respond to that is still up in the air, though. Weekend games may respond quicker, though weekday games may still see lower attendance. The question is how quickly fans will respond.
On a related note, the Bucks also announced that they will also increase capacity to 50% for the start of the NBA Playoffs. This will allow them to have attendance of up to 9,000 games. So far this season, the Bucks have had 28,700 fans at home games, though the Bucks were not allowed to have fans at games until March. Their most recent home game hit their previous capacity of 3,280 fans.