clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Afternoon Edition: Sept. 28, 2020

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

Patrons at Sluggers World Class Sports Bar are reminded to wear a mask right along with the sports news of the day in Wrigleyville.
AP Photos

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.

Fall is here! This afternoon will be mostly cloudy with some scattered showers and a high near 61 degrees. Tonight’s low will be around 46 degrees. Tomorrow will be much nicer: sunny with a high near 63 degrees.

Top story

Chicago to ease capacity restrictions on restaurants, allow drinking inside bars

Restaurants will be able to serve more customers indoors and people can once again go drinking inside bars under relaxed rules announced by the city today.

Indoor seating at Chicago restaurants had been limited to 25% of capacity. When the new rules take effect at 5 a.m. Thursday, that will climb to 40%, though limits of six people per table, with a maximum of 50 people per room, will remain.

Bars that serve alcohol but not food will again be able to serve customers indoors, but at 25% capacity, or a maximum of 50 people — whichever is fewer. Customers are limited to two hours, and must stay seated — no ordering at the bar is allowed.

In announcing the changes, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she appreciates that businesses have endured some tough times.

“Over the past six months, we have asked so much of our business community. But each time, our businesses have stepped up to the plate,” Lightfoot said in a statement released by her office.

“Thanks to this cooperation, we have met this challenging moment with grace, commitment and resilience, and the sacrifices made by our businesses, workers and residents have saved countless lives. This next step in our reopening is good news for business owners as well as the communities they serve and the thousands of residents that work for them.”

The 40% capacity rule also will apply to “health and fitness centers, personal services, non-essential retail and all other establishments” that, like restaurants, had been limited to 25%.

Establishments serving alcohol can do so until 1 a.m. and stay open until 1:30 a.m. Liquor stores and grocery stores selling alcohol to-go, however, still must stop sales at 9 p.m.

Restrictions indoor drinking were eased in June but tightened again in July as Chicago’s coronavirus numbers worsened.

“Overall, we are heading in the right direction, and this affords us an opportunity to further re-open the city and to do so gradually and safely,” Chicago’s health commissioner, Dr. Allison Arwady, said in a statement released by the mayor’s office. “But I can’t emphasize this enough: Chicagoans need to continue to follow the public health guidance – wearing masks, social distancing, frequent hand washing and staying home when sick – or we risk falling back and experiencing another rise in cases.”

Other restrictions eased affect health and fitness classes and after-school programs; they will be allowed to increase from 10 to 15 people. And in salons and barber shops, facials, shaves and other personal services for which customers must remove their masks will be allowed, but the employee must remain masked and complete the service in 15 minutes.

Read the full story for more on the changes coming Thursday.

More news you need

  1. Some suburban Chicago school districts that started the year remotely because of the coronavirus are moving to bring students back to classrooms as early as this week, with health protocols in place and contingency plans set for potential COVID-19 outbreaks. Here’s what that looks like.
  2. Eight people were killed and at least 42 others were wounded in shootings across Chicago this weekend. Five of those killed were under 20 years old.
  3. The Kenosha police officer who shot Jacob Blake in the back seven times last month told investigators he thought Blake was trying to abduct one of his own children. Officer Rusten Sheskey said he opened fire because Blake started turning toward the officer while holding a knife, his lawyer contends.
  4. A parent at Jones College Prep has sued the school’s Local School Council for declining to release footage and logs of open summer meetings, some of which were called to discuss allegations of racism at the South Loop high school. The lawsuit claims not releasing the recordings violates Illinois open records laws.

A bright one

Taste of Pilsen goes on despite COVID-19 with focus on ‘to-go’

Foodies will have the chance to hit the streets of Pilsen tomorrow to enjoy samples of signature dishes from nearly two dozen restaurants during ¡Buen Provecho! Taste of Pilsen, which puts a spotlight on eateries across the Southwest Side neighborhood.

Chicago’s summer festival circuit has been nonexistent since the coronavirus prompted restrictions of mass gatherings. But Becky Lopez, spokeswoman for the Economic Strategies Development Corporation, which organized the event, said precautions are in place to make sure Taste of Pilsen can go on safely in its 12th year.

Cantón Regio is among 21 restaurants taking part in ¡Buen Provecho! Taste of Pilsen on Tuesday.
Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

To avoid large gatherings, all the food will be to-go. Ticket-holders will be given a tote bag and a map of participating restaurants, and those eateries will prepare sample-sized entrees to place in the tote bags for minimal contact.

“It is like trick-or-treating for adults,” said Lopez. “Folks can take a walking tour of the neighborhood, take in our culturally influenced murals while checking off on the map what places they visited. People will try to go to as many places as they can.”

The event kicks off tomorrow from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tickets cost $25, plus taxes and fees, and must be purchased online in advance.

Get more information on Taste of Pilsen by reading the full story here.

From the press box

A day after Nick Foles led the Bears to a comeback win in Atlanta, coach Matt Nagy confirmed the team has a new starting QB. Foles is in for Sunday against the Colts, and, at least for now, Mitch Trubisky’s time under center in Chicago is done.

Trubisky, by all accounts a hard worker and good teammate, did everything in his power to live up to the Bears’ expectations, but the simple truth is that he’s not good enough, Jason Lieser writes.

Your daily question ☕

As the weather cools down, will you be dining and drinking inside restaurants and bars? Tell us why, or why not.

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

Friday, we asked you: What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever visited? Here’s what some of you said…

“Oaxaca, Mexico. The people, the landscapes, the food, the music, and the abundance of mezcal.” — Dave Pietruszka

“The most beautiful place I’ve visited: The Scottish Highlands. Something just eerily beautiful about it — picturesque and calm.” — Kelly Wedlake

“Grand Canyon was magnificent with its array of colors and texture of the rocky walls. Amazing!” — Mark Ruda

“Switzerland. Took a cog wheel train to the top of Corvatsch Mountain. I felt like I was on top of the world. The sky was so blue and the air so fresh.” — Marianne Idell

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

Sign up here to get the Afternoon Edition in your inbox every day.