Illinois fully reopens, restaurants back to full capacity

Illinois fully reopens, restaurants back to full capacity

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EAST MOLINE, Ill. (KWQC) – The state of Illinois fully reopened on Friday, June 11 after about 15 months of COVID-19 restrictions due to the pandemic. Businesses, venues, and large-scale events can go back to full capacity with restrictions now lifted in the state. For many, that means summer is back on.

Illinois is recording the lowest number of hospitalizations and test positivity rates since March of 2020, according to state officials.

“I’m excited, I’ve been ready for everything to reopen for a while now, so it’s great!” shares Moline resident, Nysha Conroy. “There’s so much more to do. We have a family party finally, it’s going to be a good time. We’re excited,” echoes Amber Grider and Jeremy Sargeant from Chenoa, Illinois.

Small businesses and restaurants like the Combine in East Moline are ready to get back to the swing of things. Operations Director Mark Grotelueschen says, “it’s quite exciting! I honestly thought this day was a little bit further, a couple more months down the road. I was shocked it’s happening this quickly for us, we’ve definitely been waiting for it! We’re back to full capacity, no more having to argue with people about masks since we’ve gotten enough vaccines in arms where it’s not an issue anymore.”

In The Bend in East Moline, weddings and other big events can resume at full capacity. So can concerts at the Expo Center. Grotelueschen says before the pandemic, things were “rocking and rolling” but then they had to reschedule many of the big events they planned during the pandemic.

The reopening comes right in time for everyone to enjoy their summer. Grider says, “we’re excited to have our summer back, definitely! In the winter, who does anything? But in the summer, we’re ready.”

Those who are fully vaccinated can go without face masks. But businesses and federal regulations can still ask you to wear them.

Health officials say more than half of Illinois residents 12 years and older are now fully vaccinated.

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