Even though there's still a few days left of summer, it might not be too soon to start thinking about one upcoming season: flu season.

Flu season typically takes place December through March, but cases can begin popping up as early as late fall.

Jessica Sheehy, physician assistant and infectious disease specialist at Mayo Clinic Health System, said that now is not too early to get a flu shot.

"The vaccine actually takes about two weeks to take effect into your system," Sheehy said. "So, if you got vaccinated now, you'd start to be protected in the first part of October."

Immunity from the shot lasts about six months. It is recommended everyone get the vaccine, but especially high-risk groups like pregnant women, the elderly and children.

Sheehy said the shot is the best way to stop the spread of the flu.

"It's always important to protect your own health and getting a vaccination is one of the easiest ways to go ahead and do that," Sheehy said. "It also can prevent illness from spreading to your other loved ones."

While you can get the shot through your primary care provider, Mayo Clinic will also offer vaccine clinics beginning next week at the River Hills Mall Community Room.

The clinics will be offered at the following dates and times:

Tuesday, Sept. 26, 3:30-7 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 30, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 5, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 7, 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 10, 3:30-7 p.m.

People are encouraged to schedule an appointment by calling 507-594-4700, but walk-ins are also welcome.