coronavirus illinois

Illinois Coronavirus Updates: New Closure Order in Chicago, County Reports First Case

Here are the latest developments on the coronavirus crisis today

(NOTE: Daily press conferences from Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot will be streamed live in the player above. Check back for updates.)

The rules for bars and restaurants selling alcohol in Chicago are changing.

Plus, the only Illinois county to not see a coronavirus case during the pandemic so far reports its first positive test.

Here are the latest developments on the coronavirus crisis today (July 10):

Illinois Reports Highest Daily Number of Coronavirus Cases in More Than a Month

Illinois health officials reported an additional 1,300 coronavirus cases on Friday - the highest number of coronavirus cases reported in a single day since June 2.

Specifically, 1,317 new cases were announced by the Illinois Department of Public Health, bringing the total for the pandemic so far to 151,767.

Thursday, July 9, on which 1,018 new cases were reported, and Friday are the only two days since June 5 that have seen more than 1,000 new cases.

According to the Department of Public Health, there were also 25 additional deaths Friday, which puts the state’s confirmed fatality count at 7,144.

Illinois also reported an additional 32,987 new tests within a 24-hour period, bumping up the statewide total to 1,911,743.

The seven-day positivity rate now sits at 2.9 percent, according to state leaders.

District 211, One of Illinois' Largest, Announces 3 Reopening Scenarios

Township High School District 211, one of the largest school districts in Illinois, has announced three possible scenarios as they prepare for the first day of school next month.

The district, which includes Conant, Fremd, Hoffman Estates, Palatine and Schaumburg high schools, is set to start the 2020-21 school year on Aug. 13.

According to a letter from District Superintendent Lisa Small, there are "three learning scenarios that may occur at any point during the school year."

Which scenario the school uses depends on "the health status of our region," Small wrote.

The options for the district include:

- Remote Scenario: No students physically present in school.
Hybrid Scenario: 50% of the students physically attend school for a week, while 50% of students attend school remotely for a week. Each student group, representing 50%, rotates weekly between remote attendance to class from home and physical attendance.
Traditional Scenario: All students attend class according to the typical course schedule.

According to Small, the current status in Illinois would indicate the school will be in a "hybrid scenario," but with five weeks until the start of the new school year, things could change. The district said it will likely not implement a full return to classrooms come August.

Read more here.

More Lakeview Streets Closing for Outdoor Dining This Weekend

More Lakeview streets will be joining in on a city program closing down traffic to make room for outdoor seating at restaurants this weekend, but this time things will be a little different.

Dine Out West Lakeview begins Friday and "reclaims side streets along the Southport Corridor and Lincoln Avenue to create an outdoor dining experience, similar to a food hall."

The area will offer up to 30 tables per business and diners can order takeout and eat outside.

The locations include:

  • Cornelia & Southport (W. Cornelia Ave., East of Southport Ave. to the nearest alley)
    • Fridays: 5 p.m. - 10 p.m.
    • Saturdays: 9:30 a.m. - 10 p.m.
    • Sundays: 9:30 a.m. - 10 p.m. 
  • Wellington & Lincoln (W. Wellington Ave., West of Lincoln Ave. to the nearest alley)
    • Saturdays: 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.
    • Sundays: 9 a.m. - 8 p.m. 

Field Museum Announces Reopening Date, Plans

Chicago's Field Museum has announced plans to reopen this month.

The museum plans to reopen for members only beginning July 17 and will open to the public on July 24, according to its website.

"Our top priority is to create a safe environment for all of our visitors and staff, while letting you reconnect with science and culture in the exhibits you know and love," a message on the website reads. "We used CDC recommendations as well as museum guidelines from the State of Illinois to create our reopening policies and procedures."

The museum will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursdays through Mondays. Visitors will need to purchase tickets, which will give a designated entry time.

Here's a look at some of the new procedures being put in place, according to the museum:

  • Face masks are required for all staff and visitors, except for children under 2 
  • 144 hand sanitizer stations are installed throughout the building 
  • Frequent, rigorous cleaning procedures follow CDC guidelines
  • Floor markers help guide social distancing and direct one-way walking paths
  • Exhibitions that are highly interactive or located in small spaces are temporarily closed

Floors will be marked throughout the museum to direct traffic and capacity will be limited to 25%, the museum said.

Archdiocese of Chicago Releases Reopening Plan for Fall School

The Archdiocese of Chicago on Friday announced its plan to reopen schools in the fall, allowing students to return to classrooms for in-person instruction.

The plan includes measures like mandatory face masks for students over the age of 2, student "cohorts," temperature checks and the option to continue online learning.

“We live in extraordinary times and it is our intent to reopen our school buildings safely to all families this fall,” Dr. Jim Rigg, superintendent of the Archdiocese of Chicago Catholic Schools, said in a statement. “Such a reopening has required careful and diligent planning on the part of our school employees, along with consultation from medical professionals, state and local officials, educators, parents, and others. We believe that in-person instruction is the best way to benefit our students and are committed to providing that instruction in a safe manner.”

More information on the plan can be found here.

Changes Coming to Chicago Riverwalk as Reopening Continues

Changes are coming to Chicago's Riverwalk Friday as reopening in the city continues.

The Riverwalk will return to its normal operating hours, opening for both recreation and business from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., city officials announced. Vendors will also be allowed to stay open until 11 p.m.

"This comes after the city has been closely monitoring the amount of people using the Riverwalk each day and its current projections for use throughout the summer and determined that it was feasible for these simultaneous operations," the mayor's office said in a release.

Vendors will still be available by reservation, officials said.

Three vendors will also reopen next week in the Riverwalk's Community Marketplace, including Batter & Berries, Chiya Chai Cafe and Shop Small Chicago. The city said additional businesses will "gradually reopen throughout the summer."

People will still be required to wear face coverings while on the Riverwalk, officials said.

Chicago Bars, Restaurants Serving Alcohol Now Required to Close by Midnight, City Says

Chicago bars and restaurants serving alcohol will now be required to close by midnight each night, the city is set to announce Friday.

According to the mayor's office, new regulations from the Business Affairs and Consumer Protection require any establishment that serves alcohol to shut down by midnight in an effort to "prevent the spread of COVID-19 at Chicago's bars and restaurants." Curbside pick-up and delivery of food can still take place after midnight, as long as customers do not enter or remain in an establishment, officials said.

The city already prohibited the sale of alcohol for on-site consumption after 11 p.m. and for off-site consumption at 9 p.m.

"While the vast majority of establishments are following regulations and taking important preventative steps, this directive will minimize the spread of COVID-19 by preventing late-night congregating that could occur after the cutoff of alcohol sales," the mayor's office said in a release.

Restaurants that do not have a liquor license won't be subject to the closure order.

Illinois County Gets Its First Reported Coronavirus Case

The coronavirus has been confirmed in every Illinois county after a small county west of Springfield reported its first case, months after the outbreak began.

A 66-year-old woman last week tested positive for the virus in Scott County and was reported to be recovering at home, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

“Well everybody was disappointed because we kind of liked being the only county that didn’t have a case, a confirmed case,” said Rex McIntire, mayor of Winchester, the county seat. “But we kind of also knew it was just a matter of time, so no shock or anything.”

Out of 102 counties in the state, Scott County was the only one left that did not have any cases after Edgar County had its first reported case in May.

Many residents credit the low number of cases to the county's size — roughly 5,000 people — and distance from congested urban areas.

Summer Sports Camps Suspended at Lake Zurich High School Due to Coronavirus

Summer sports camps at Lake Zurich High School have been suspended after multiple student athletes tested positive for COVID-19, according to a message to families posted on the school’s website.

Football, poms and baseball camps started Monday. It is unclear how many student athletes tested positive for the virus.

Lake Zurich Community School District 95 said after completion of the first day of camp on Monday, multiple student athletes were tested and self-reported positive results for the virus. Additionally, the district said other students did not pass the temperature/health screener to enter camp, indicated illness following participation in on of the camps, and others were in close contact with students who have tested positive for COVID-19.

Public health officials said all participants of the camps have been asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

A Total of 100 Performers With Windy City Ties Sing ‘Sweet Home Chicago'

An all-star line-up of Chicago natives and stars who got their start in the Windy City have come together for a new music video, performing the Blues anthem “Sweet Home Chicago.”

Featuring an ensemble of more than 100 participants, all with deep ties to the Chicago arts scene, the star-studded video will raise money for the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund to help the many Chicago-area artists struggling in the wake of COVID-19 closures.

The impressive ensemble of participants in the virtual music video includes Emmy, Grammy and Tony Award-winners and features Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jim Belushi, Keegan-Michael Key, Jeff Perry, George Wendt, Joe Mantegna, Jessie Mueller, André De Shields, Alan Ruck, Rachel Barton Pine, Rhymefest, E. Faye Butler, Ramsey Lewis, Sandra Delgado, Jim Peterik, Lecy Goranson, Kurt Elling, Twista, Chef Rick Bayless, members of Joffrey Ballet, M.A.D.D. Rhythms Tap Dance Collective and many more.

You can find instructions on how to donate to the cause at the end of the video here.

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