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These D.C. kids are excited to be vaccinated

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON: Who's ready for superpowers?



Americans wasted no time lining up to get the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine this past week once it was authorized by the Food and Drug Administration for children ages five to 11. At a pop-up clinic in a southeast D.C. community center, we met Rachelle Anders, who was there with her 9-year-old son Clay. She said getting her kid vaccinated felt like...

RACHELLE ANDERS: It's sense of relief, really, that, you know, these guys missed out most. I think of everybody, they suffered the most.

CLAY ANDERS: I'm excited. And since when my sister got vaccinated, I've been waiting for them to approve the COVID vaccine for 5 to 11. She's been hanging out with her friends a lot. And after I get vaccinated, I'll be able to hang out with my friends in other spaces because I'll be vaccinated.


ALEX LAWSON: Everyone who comes out after getting vaccinated - everyone cheers for them.

KURTZLEBEN: Alex Lawson crossed the city to get a vaccine with his 5-year-old son Xander.

A LAWSON: What's the thing that you're most excited about after you're fully vaccinated?

XANDER LAWSON: Then I can not have my mask on.

A LAWSON: Right, when we're playing at the playground and things like that.

XANDER: And I want to go to the arcade.

A LAWSON: When - and things like that are going to be possible again, yep.

XANDER: When can I go to the arcade?

A LAWSON: That's the important one, the arcade. But what about the public health emergency in general. You want it to be over?


A LAWSON: And so this is how we're going to end it - right? - is everyone's going to get vaccinated.

XANDER: Yes. And the hard part is waiting in line.

KURTZLEBEN: Around the same time, Genji Lawson - no relation - and her 8-year-old son Yusef were leaving the community center with a fresh jab. Yusef told us how he felt.

YUSEF LAWSON: Kind of a little bit scared. Kind of this, like, feeling - tingly feeling. And then when you're done, it was kind of weird to me.

GENJI LAWSON: But weren't you excited when you heard that we were going to - you could get shots? Weren't you excited? You told me.

YUSEF: I was excited. And then I was like, wait. What do they look like? Are they big or small? I'm not taking this Band-Aid off tonight.

G LAWSON: You're not taking your Band-Aid off tonight?

YUSEF: No, and I'm not taking a shower.

G LAWSON: You're not taking a...

YUSEF: Can't take a shower.

G LAWSON: That's fair. You don't have to tonight.

KURTZLEBEN: Rachel Mlinarchik came with her 6-year-old daughter Vanya with the promise of ice cream after a vaccine. Rachel said she was hoping for some normalcy now.

RACHEL MLINARCHIK: We try to avoid anything that's kind of indoors except for school. We don't eat at restaurants indoors. We always eat outside. And then I do that even if I'm not with the kids because they're at home unvaccinated. It makes me nervous because I have to travel for work now. So, yeah, I would just feel a lot better if every person in my household were vaccinated.

VANYA MLINARCHIK: I'm excited to go to the zoo. I wanted to go see the panda cub.

MLINARCHIK: Yeah, you could do your theater stuff more.

VANYA: Yeah, I can.

MLINARCHIK: Like, she's going to be in a theater performance that we were nervous about, but now we're not so nervous about because it's inside.

KURTZLEBEN: Those were some parents and children ages 5 to 11 in line to get their vaccine in Washington, D.C. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.