Protests, Some Violent, Spread in Wake of George Floyd Death


Demonstrators marched, stopped traffic and in some cases lashed out violently at police as protests erupted Friday in dozens of U.S. cities following the killing of George Floyd after a white officer pressed a knee into his neck while taking him into custody in Minnesota.

Building at Former Crawford Power Plant to be Demolished June 5

The partly demolished site of the former Crawford Power Generating Station, which was active from 1925 to 2012. (WTTW News)

A planned demolition of a building at the former Crawford Power Plant will take place June 5, after being delayed nearly three weeks after protests erupted and the local alderman objected, company officials announced Friday.

Trump Strikes China Over Virus, Hong Kong and Student Visas

President Donald Trump speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House, Friday, May 29, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo / Alex Brandon)

President Donald Trump announced Friday he would withdraw funding from the World Health Organization, end Hong Kong’s special trade status and suspend visas of Chinese graduate students suspected of conducting research on behalf of their government.

New Season of ‘Somebody Feed Phil’ Shows the Chicago Restaurant Scene We All Want Back

Phil Rosenthal, left, digs into peach cobbler and ice cream during the Chicago episode of "Somebody Feed Phil." (Courtesy of Shawn Michelle's Ice Cream)

Chicago’s restaurant scene has been hit hard during the coronavirus pandemic. A new episode of the Netflix series “Somebody Feed Phil,” which filmed in the city in 2019, serves as a reminder of why these businesses are worth saving.

Minneapolis Cop Who Knelt on Man’s Neck Charged with Murder

A protester carries a U.S. flag upside down, a sign of distress, next to a burning building Thursday, May 28, 2020, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo / Julio Cortez)

The police officer who was seen on video kneeling on the neck of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who died in custody after pleading that he could not breathe, was arrested Friday and charged with murder.

Lightfoot Blasts Trump For ‘Threatening’ Those Protesting Death of George Floyd

A screenshot from a May 29, 2020 livestream with Mayor Lori Lightfoot. (Chicago Mayor’s Office)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot called the president’s statements about those protesting the death of George Floyd “profoundly dangerous” and were part of an effort to stoke racial tensions for his own political benefit.

US Consumer Spending Sinks by Record 13.6% in Face of Virus

A woman walks into a closing Gordmans store, Thursday, May 28, 2020, in St. Charles, Missouri. (AP Photo / Jeff Roberson)

U.S. consumer spending plunged by a record-shattering 13.6% in April as the viral pandemic shuttered businesses, forced millions of layoffs and sent the economy into a deep recession.

Take a Virtual Hike Through Chicago’s Rare Original Prairie Remnant

The James Woodworth Prairie Preserve is a rare remnant of original Illinois prairie. (Frank Mayfield / Flickr)

The Illinois Native Plant Society is hosting a Facebook Live virtual hike through James Woodworth Prairie Preserve on Saturday.

Uber Launches Rent-By-Hour Service as Demand for Ride-Hailing Services Drops

(Petr Kratochvil / Public Domain Pictures)

Ride-hailing giant Uber will allow customers to book its cars and drivers by the hour in Chicago starting Tuesday as the coronavirus pandemic continues to reduce demand for one-way trips.

Hiking Guide Gives New Meaning to ‘Rails to Trails’

"Chicago Transit Hikes" showcases trails accessible via CTA, Metro or the South Shore Line. (Credits: Patty Wetli / WTTW News; Belt Publishing; Lindsay Welbers)

A new guidebook showcases the region’s best hiking trails accessible via the CTA, Metra or the South Shore Line. Because someday, we’ll ride trains again.

St. Joseph Mayor, Tourism Council on Pandemic Fallout in Southwest Michigan

Small businesses in St. Joseph, Michigan. (WTTW News)

Nestled on the coast of Lake Michigan, St. Joseph is one of many small communities in the southwest Michigan that relies heavily on summer tourism to support its many small businesses. 

Jazz Pianist Ramsey Lewis is Turning 85, And You’re Invited to the Party

Ramsey Lewis speaks with WTTW News via videoconference.

Birthday celebrations during the pandemic have gotten creative, but there haven’t been too many birthday concerts. Chicago jazz composer and pianist Ramsey Lewis is adding that to the list this weekend.

Ask Geoffrey: A Brief History of Chicago’s Trash

(WTTW News)

Longtime Chicago Ald. Roman Pucinski once said, “There’s nothing as crucial to an alderman as garbage.” So how did garbage cans become a source and symbol of political power in this city? Geoffrey Baer talks trash.

COVID-19 Across Chicago: St. Joseph, Michigan

A scene from St. Joseph, Michigan, on Thursday, May 28, 2020. (WTTW News)

Summer in Chicago means escaping to some of the beach towns around Lake Michigan. But how has the COVID-19 pandemic impacted those areas that rely on tourist dollars?

CPS Chief Janice Jackson: ‘We Don’t Yet Know’ What Fall Learning Will Look Like

Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Thursday, May 28, 2020. (WTTW News)

The head of Chicago Public Schools said the district will continue honing its remote learning program over the summer as it prepares for the possibility of additional classroom closures in the fall due to COVID-19.

How Dentists Are Adapting to the Pandemic

Dentists are wearing more personal protective equipment in the COVID-19 era. (WTTW News)

After two months of performing only emergency procedures, dentist offices in Illinois are now fully reopening. But the experience will be very different — for both patients and dentists.

Illinois Headed in ‘Right Direction’ on Eve of Phase 3: State’s Top Doctor

New statewide totals: 115,833 cases, 5,186 deaths

A passenger wearing a face mask boards a CTA bus in Chicago. (WTTW News)

“As a state we’re definitely headed in the right direction, we’ve successfully met the metrics to move into phase three, but we must proceed with caution,” said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.

Lightfoot Backs New Top Cop Despite Memorial Day ‘Fail’

A screenshot from a May 2, 2020 livestream with Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown in the city’s West Garfield Park neighborhood. (Chicago Mayor’s Office)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot offered new Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown her “unflagging support” on Thursday — even as she once again called his strategy for Memorial Day “a fail.”

Why is My Park Closed? Some Chicagoans Complain of Losing Access to Parks That Should Be Open

A Chicago police vehicle blocks the track at Mandrake Park on the city’s South Side. (WTTW News)

Despite restricted access to the lakefront and its adjacent parks during the pandemic, most Chicago parks are supposed to be open. Why some residents and park advocates are concerned about equitable access to these much-needed spaces.

State Park Campgrounds Open Friday: Here’s What to Expect

Campgrounds at Illinois state parks are reopened, with new guidelines in place. (Kelle Cruz / Flickr)

First of all, take note that “reopened” doesn’t mean “back to normal.” Guidelines, including limiting campsites and campfires to registered occupants, are in place.

Chicago Set to Start Reopening June 3: Lightfoot

A lone pedestrian is seen walking along the street in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood on May 19, 2020. (WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot has announced that Chicago will start to cautiously reopen next Wednesday as the peak of the coronavirus pandemic in Chicago appears to have passed.

Online Pet Adoptions a Success, Chicago Shelters Say

(Bolanu Teslaru Andrei / Pixabay)

Chicago Animal Care and Control and PAWS Chicago pivoted to online pet adoptions when Illinois’ stay-at-home order was issued. We check in on how that’s been going — and how else the pandemic has impacted animal shelters.

First 2 Cook County Judges Test Positive for COVID-19

Most court operations delayed into July, per extended order

(Matt Masterson / Chicago Tonight)

The announcement comes one day after the Office of the Chief Judge announced the extension of a modified court schedule postponing most criminal and civil cases across the Cook County court system into July.

AP-NORC Poll: Half of Americans Would Get a COVID-19 Vaccine

This May 4, 2020 photo from the University of Maryland School of Medicine, the first patient enrolled in Pfizer’s COVID-19 coronavirus vaccine clinical trial at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, receives an injection. (University of Maryland School of Medicine via AP)

Only about half of Americans say they would get a COVID-19 vaccine if the scientists working furiously to create one succeed, a number that’s surprisingly low considering the effort going into the global race for a vaccine.

What Killed a Plan to Transform Health Care on the South Side

(WTTW News)

A group of South Side hospital leaders are dropping a planned joint medical system after the state failed to come through with funding. What happened — and what it means for South Side residents.

Spotlight Politics: The Latest on City, State Reopening Plans

A business in Edison Park on Chicago’s Northwest Side tries to catch the attention of passersby during the pandemic. (WTTW News)

Chicago scores a casino win in the legislative session that just wrapped up.  And both Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Mayor Lori Lightfoot expand on what reopening across the city and state will look like.

COVID-19 Across Chicago: Chicago Lawn

(WTTW News)

It was the site of a 1966 race riot where Martin Luther King Jr. was attacked. Today, the Marquette Park neighborhood in the Chicago Lawn community is staring down one of the worst COVID-19 outbreaks in the city.

How to Protect Your Credit Score’s Health During the Pandemic

(Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash)

For the 1 in 6 Americans who have lost their jobs due to the coronavirus, their credit score might be the last thing on their minds. 

In Chicago Lawn, IMAN ‘Doubles Down’ to Combat Virus Fallout

(WTTW News)

As part of our series COVID-19 Across Chicago, we speak with Rami Nashashibi, executive director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network.

Illinois Hair Salons Prepare to Open Friday, But Not in Chicago

(Photo by Edgar Chaparro on Unsplash)

On Friday, all salons and barbershops in the state — except those in Chicago — will be allowed to reopen as part of phase three of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s reopening plan. What will the new salon experience be like?

State Budget Approves Lawmakers’ Cost-of-Living Raise, But Sets Aside $0

(Meagan Davis / Wikimedia Commons)

Lawmakers will not get a pay raise as part of the newly approved state budget — even though state law requires that members of the Illinois House and Senate get an annual boost, Comptroller Susana Mendoza said Wednesday.

Writers Theatre Devises a Flexible Plan for 2020-21 Season

(Courtesy of Writers Theatre)

How do you design a pandemic-era theater season? The Glencoe-based theater has devised a multifaceted plan that combines a degree of certainty with the option of built-in flexibility, with the ultimate goal of keeping live theater alive.