Chicago Lakefront Restaurants Allowed to Reopen as Beaches Remain Closed

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Beachside restaurants along Lake Michigan in Chicago are able to open for business for the first time this summer during the pandemic, health and city officials said Wednesday.

Lakefront concessions fell under Chicago's order to close the lakefront during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, but will now be allowed to reopen under parameters that other restaurants currently have to follow due to the pandemic.

"Chicago Park District and City officials have engaged concessionaires during the past few months to determine when and how lakefront concessions can open safely given public health guidance," the park district said in a statement.

Restaurant vendors were notified this week that they could reopen even though beaches must remain closed. Vendors can open as early as this week provided they have the proper health and safety precautions in place, the city said.

"With the exception of the harbors, golf courses, and trail, the lakefront, including beaches, remain closed," the park district's statement reads. "Lakefront restaurants with patios can accommodate seated dining service; grab and go concessions will require patrons to make their purchase and keep it moving."

At least a handful of lakefront eateries plan to serve customers and they will follow the same guidelines as other restaurants in the city.

"Castaways" and "Shore Club" announced on Facebook they will open Friday.

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