UFC President Dana White announced that UFC 261 will take place next month with no capacity limits for fans despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The event will be hosted at the Vystar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida with fans in full attendance. White said that the fight will take place on April 24 and that there may be upwards of 15,000 fans in the arena cheering on the action.

The UFC president did not confirm whether additional safety predictions, such as COVID-19 testing or face mask requirements would be implemented. 

UFC 261 will mark the first time that fighters will have an audience in North America since the beginning of the shutdown in March of 2020, according to The Associated Press. The events in the past year in America have been in empty arenas. They did hold events that included some spectators in Abu Dhabi earlier this year. 

Florida officials are still encouraging residents to “avoid congregating in groups larger than 10.” The state reported 3,699 COVID-19 cases on Sunday, according to The New York Times. Florida, similarly to other regions across the United States, has seen a sharp drop in cases since its peak in early January. 

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