Afternoon Edition: May 28, 2020

Today’s update is a 5-minute read that will brief you on the day’s biggest stories.

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Chicago will move to Phase 3 of Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s reopening plan on June 3.

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Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about a 5-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.

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Afternoon Edition

Chicago’s most important news of the day, delivered every weekday afternoon. Plus, a bonus issue on Saturdays that dives into the city’s storied history.

This afternoon will be mostly cloudy, with a high near 79 degrees. Showers and thunderstorms are in the forecast from now pretty much until tomorrow. Tonight’s low will be around 58 degrees. Tomorrow will gradually clear up, with a high near 72 degrees ahead of a cool but sunny weekend.

Top story

Chicago to begin limited reopening on June 3

Chicago will begin a partial reopening of restaurants and other businesses on Wednesday, June 3, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced today.

On June 8, libraries will reopen, along with Park District facilities west of Lake Shore Drive.

As for summer programs, youth activities, the lakefront, beaches and churches, the city will have to wait and see “how initial first steps go,” the mayor said.

Officially, under the city’s guidelines for reopening, this means we are moving to Phase 3. But Phase 3 does not mean the pandemic is over, Lightfoot cautioned. We cannot “totally eliminate risk. The best we can do is continue following public health guidance” around wearing a mask, washing hands and maintaining social distance, she said.

If cases spike again and people fail to obey social distancing and mask guidelines, Lightfoot said she won’t hesitate to revert to the more-restrictive Phase 2.

Phase 3, called “Cautiously Reopen,” maintains strict physical distancing but also allows non-essential workers to return to work gradually; more businesses, non-profits and city entities to reopen with appropriate protections for workers and customers; social gatherings of fewer than 10 people; and the limited reopening of public amenities. 

With businesses reopening, Lightfoot urged companies to stagger starting times for employees to avoid overwhelming the CTA.

The rest of the state enters Phase 3 of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s plan on Friday. 

Read the full story from Fran Spielman here.

More news you need

  1. David Brown failed his first major test as Chicago’s police superintendent because he was more concerned with cutting overtime than fighting violence, and didn’t share his Memorial Day weekend plans with local leaders, Ald. Chris Taliaferro said today. “The mistake was cutting back on officers,” he said.
  2. For Karla Taylor-Bauman, a financial advisor from Lake Villa, COVID-19 progressed from the sniffles to a hacking cough to barely being able to breathe. She was put on a ventilator and into a drug-induced coma, which lasted 21 days. Now on the mend, she recounted her story to Stefano Esposito.
  3. Two churches have taken their legal challenge against Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s stay-at-home order to the U.S. Supreme Court in an against-the-odds bid to block the governor’s coronavirus restrictions. Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church of Chicago and Logos Baptist Ministries of Niles have already been shot down twice in their efforts to block Pritzker’s orders.
  4. The ACLU has filed a lawsuit in Cook County against Clearview AI, the developer of a controversial facial recognition tool that allows users to compare an image against a database of billions of photos lifted from the internet. The tool has been provided to public and private entities, including the Chicago Police Department.
  5. The city is temporarily converting some roads into “shared streets,” which will accommodate walkers, runners, bikers and only local car traffic. Live on the North or Northwest Side? See if your neighborhood is on the list.
  6. The Netflix comedy series “Space Force” is a re-teaming of “The Office” showrunner Greg Daniels and star Steve Carell in a workplace comedy with a stellar supporting cast, so it was easy to assume the show would be great. But what we get is just “pretty good,” Richard Roeper writes in his latest review.
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A bright one

City’s first downtown pot shop to open today

If you live downtown and you’ve been waiting for a dispensary to open up near you, today’s your lucky day: The first pot shop in the area opens today in River North.

Cresco Labs’ new Sunnyside cannabis dispensary will also be the first in the city to exclusively sell recreational weed. Chicago’s 11 existing dispensaries, including another Cresco location in Lake View, are currently licensed to serve both medical cannabis patients and recreational buyers.


A 55-year-old man makes a purchase at Cresco Labs’ Sunnyside dispensary in River North on the store’s opening day.

Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Sun-Times

To streamline sales and promote social distancing, the store will only be accepting online orders. Once customers receive a text notification that their order is ready, they can check in at a designated waiting area to get in line to pick up their goodies.

Cresco officials said products will include marijuana flower, which has been hard to come by for recreational customers because stores have been reserving supplies for medical patients as growers struggled to meet demand.

Read the full story here.

From the press box

The NHL listed Chicago as a potential hub city for the proposed postseason if play resumes, but how realistic is that? Blackhawks reporter Ben Pope breaks down the factors that will guide the decision.

Bears reporter Jason Lieser also ranked the NFL’s 32 teams following an exciting offseason. Check out how the Bears stack up here.

Your daily question ☕

If you could go back to the start of the pandemic knowing what you know now, would you do anything differently?

Email us (please include your name and where you live) and we might include your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.

Yesterday, we asked you what it’s been like quarantining with your family, and living with your parents or grown children again. Here’s what some of you said…

“Living with my dad during the stay-at-home order takes me back to the days when I was young and growing up in a house with my sisters, mom and dad. The tables have turned. I’m the one making homemade tortillas, dicing the meat to bite-size, fixing the warm bath, washing the clothes, changing the sheets and sitting together watching his favorite show, Jeopardy! He still has it!” — Renee Barrera 

“It’s a blessing to be with my son and my grandchildren during these times.” — Joyce Juzwik

Thanks for reading the Chicago Afternoon Edition.Got a story you think we missed? Email us here.

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