The Week in Review: Pandemic Shutters Chicago Lakefront, Parks

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(WTTW News)

The latest coronavirus cases and deaths in the state. Lakefront and park closures — what might be next? And what the $2 trillion economic rescue package means for the state budget — and your wallet.

Had Enough of Canned Goods? Local Growers Team Up to Bring Farmers Market to Your Door

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A sample farmers market to-go box. (Courtesy of Closed Loop Farms)

Closed Loop Farms is leading a group of local food producers to deliver everything from Michelin-worthy greens to naturally fermented sodas directly to your door.

Trump Signs $2.2T Stimulus After Swift Congressional Votes

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President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Briefing Room, Thursday, March 26, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo / Alex Brandon)

President Donald Trump signed an unprecedented $2.2 trillion economic rescue package into law Friday, after swift and near-unanimous action by Congress this week to support businesses, rush resources to overburdened health care providers and help struggling families.

Flatter or Fight? Governors Seeking Help Must Navigate Trump

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In this March 19, 2020 photo, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker listens to a question during a news conference in Chicago. (AP Photo / Charles Rex Arbogast)

Facing an unprecedented public health crisis, governors are trying to get what they need from Washington, and fast. But that means navigating the disorienting politics of dealing with President Trump.

‘We’ll Be Back Stronger’: Performing Arts Companies Rally, Reflect

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(WTTW News)

How the Chicago performing arts community is preparing for the uncertainty of the spring season.

Rep. Jesus ‘Chuy’ Garcia Talks Stimulus Package, Immigration

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U.S. Rep. Jesus “Chuy” Garcia speaks with WTTW News on Thursday, March 26, 2020.

As a vote on the largest economic stimulus package in American history approaches in the U.S. House of Representatives, one Chicago congressman says he’s behind it.

Keeping Your Kids Learning (and Yourself Sane) Through the School Shutdown

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(Brandis Friedman / WTTW News)

With Illinois schools closed through at least April 7 – and April 20 in Chicago – parents are suddenly finding themselves thrust into an uncomfortable new role: their children’s educator.

The ‘Devastating Impacts’ of COVID-19 on Illinois Finances

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(Meagan Davis / Wikimedia Commons)

The coronavirus is taking a toll on individuals’ pocketbooks, but it’s also hurting government budgets across the nation. What it could mean for Illinois.

Little Village Rocked by Coronavirus, Shutdowns

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(WTTW News)

Coronavirus-related city and state shutdowns have had an impact across Chicago, but neighborhoods like Little Village on the city’s Southwest Side are feeling them a littler harder. 

Public Space in the Age of COVID-19: How Other Cities are Coping

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In an effort to discourage people from congregating, Chicago on Thursday shut down many public spaces. (WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot shut down Chicago’s lakefront, 606 trail and Riverwalk to encourage social distancing. But will limiting access to public space reduce the demand for it? We look to other cities’ ideas.

Pritzker Announces COVID-19 Relief Fund as Cases Soar to 2,538

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This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

Illinois health officials on Thursday reported the largest single-day jump in COVID-19 cases in the state – 673 – surpassing a record set just a day earlier.

What the Federal Stimulus and Relief Bill Means for You and the Economy

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(Ken Teegardin / Flickr)

The U.S. House is expected to pass a $2 trillion stimulus and relief package — the largest bailout in American history. But will it be enough to save workers and businesses ravaged by the virus?

Illinois Broadcasters Rally to Support State Food Pantries

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(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jeffrey Parkinson)

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to unfold and layoffs and business closures mount, food pantries all over Illinois are bracing for increased need.

Mayor Lightfoot to Chicagoans: ‘You Simply Cannot Congregate’

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A scene along Chicago’s lakefront on Thursday, March 26, 2020. (WTTW News)

A day after Mayor Lori Lightfoot threatened to close off access to city parks if Chicagoans continued to flout social distancing rules, the city shut down the lakefront trail, beaches and adjoining parks, the Bloomingdale Trail and the Chicago Riverwalk.

Volunteers 3D Printing Face Shields for Chicago Hospital in ‘Dire’ Need

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Deborah and Richard “Richie” Beien (WTTW News)

Despite promises from the government that supplies are on the way, some area hospitals are worried they won’t have enough for a likely surge in COVID-19 patients. Swedish Hospital turned to the community for help, and an innovative duo stepped up.

COVID-19 Policy: Ald. Hairston on Precautions, Best Practices During Pandemic

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Ald. Leslie Hairston speaks with Paris Schutz on “Chicago Tonight.” (WTTW News)

How is the coronavirus impacting businesses and residents in Chicago’s South Shore neighborhood? We speak with Ald. Leslie Hairston, whose 5th Ward includes much of Hyde Park and Woodlawn, and sections of South Shore. 

More COVID-19 Cases Discovered in Cook County Jail

By Wednesday evening, 17 detainees had tested positive

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(WTTW News)

The number of Cook County Jail detainees who have tested positive for COVID-19 nearly tripled between Wednesday morning and evening, according to the sheriff’s office, which has now tested 50 individuals who have begun exhibiting flu-like symptoms.

South Shore Residents and Businesses Cope with Coronavirus

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(WTTW News)

From small businesses to health care facilities to residents, the coronavirus shutdown is impacting neighborhoods across the city. We visit the South Shore community to find out how area residents and businesses are handling the crisis.

Chicago Jazz Artists Look for Ways to Cope with COVID-19

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(WTTW News)

The city named 2020 the Year of Chicago Music, and this week was supposed to be Cabaret Week. We visited a few jazz and cabaret folks and found a vast music scene that’s singing the blues.

Will a Government Bailout Resurrect the Airline Industry?

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(WTTW News)

The struggling airline industry will get a $32 billion infusion as part of the $2 trillion congressional stimulus bill. But will it be enough to resurrect an industry that is one of the most essential for the economy?

CPS Approved for $75 Million in Spending to Address COVID-19 Emergency

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The Board of Education unanimously voted to approve the spending authority, which CPS says it will use to fund emergency personnel, remote learning and meal distribution.

Financial Impact of Coronavirus on Poor Will Spark ‘Second Pandemic’

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(Pixabay)

The Chicago Youth Centers network serves around 1,400 children, but the coronavirus pandemic has halted its in-person services – and that will have lasting repercussions on families in need, the group says.

Pritzker Moves Illinois Tax Deadline to July 15 to Alleviate COVID-19 Burden

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Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announces a shelter-in-place rule to combat the spread of the Covid-19 virus, during a news conference Friday, March 20, 2020, in Chicago. (AP Photo / Charles Rex Arbogast)

In a move aimed at softening the economic impact of the novel coronavirus, Illinoisans will have an additional three months to file their state taxes. Gov. J.B. Pritzker made the announcement as the state reported it’s largest single-day jump in COVID-19 cases.

Life, Restricted: Chicago Native Teaching in China on Quarantine Measures

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Jeff Axelrod with is students in Zhangjiagang, China. (Courtesy Jeff Axelrod)

While Illinois residents have been following a stay-at-home order since Saturday, people in China have been dealing with restricted living conditions for months. We speak with a Chicago native who now teaches high school in the Chinese city of Zhangjiagang.

Lightfoot Threatens to Shut Down Entire Lakefront if People Keep Gathering in Groups

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Now is not the time for a long stroll or ride along the lakefront, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. (Eric Allix Rogers / Flickr)

Chicago’s mayor says too many people are flouting the governor’s order to stay home and maintain social distance, particularly along the lakefront and at playgrounds. “This situation is deadly serious,” she said Wednesday.

Here’s What to Do if You Think You Have Coronavirus, Even if You’re Uninsured

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This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV).

People without health insurance can receive care if they think they have the novel coronavirus, and no patient will be turned away because of inability to pay, according to the Chicago Department of Public Health.

Still Open: Chicago Print Shop is Offering Free Signs to Small Businesses

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Free banner signs help business advertise their new hours and services during COVID-19 lockdown. (Courtesy of Snappy Printing and Graphics)

Tony Grammatis, owner of Snappy Printing and Graphics, is offering free banners to small businesses struggling to stay afloat during the COVID-19 crisis.

Chicago Uses Hotels for Quarantine to Ease Hospital Demand

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The newly renamed Hotel 166, located near the Northwestern University Hospital complex is seen Monday, March 23, 2020, in Chicago. (AP Photo / Charles Rex Arbogast)

Chicago’s plan to reserve at least 1,000 hotel rooms through partnerships with five hotels is the first such sweeping strategy unveiled in the U.S. aimed at relieving the pressure on hospitals that are the only option for the seriously sick. 

Mariano’s Joins List of Stores Offering Special Shopping Hours for Seniors

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Grocers are setting aside shopping hours for seniors, to protect them from COVID-19. (Lynn Friedman / Flickr)

A number of grocers and big-box retailers have announced special shopping hours for senior citizens and others vulnerable to COVID-19 to ensure less crowded situations, as well as access to essential items.

A Virtual Visit to the Doctor’s Office: How Telemedicine Works

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(WTTW News)

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, Illinois doctors are increasingly seeing their patients online, and executive actions last week by President Donald Trump and Gov. J.B. Pritzker make it easier than ever.

Illinois Universities Give Remote Learning the Old College Try During Pandemic

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(WTTW News)

The nation’s academic institutions are shifting operations online to bring instruction to students at their homes all over the country — and even the world. We check in with some local universities.

COVID-19 Behind Bars: How Illinois is Protecting the Incarcerated

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(WTTW News)

Among those most vulnerable to the coronavirus are jail and prison populations, where people live in tight quarters, with potentially limited health care and access to basic needs like soap.