Mayor Shuts Down North Side Beach After Large Crowd Gathers

Mayor Shuts Down Montrose Beach After Large Crowd Gathers
Photo credit City of Chicago
CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The day after Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot threatened to shut down the lakefront because of a large crowd, the city has fenced off Montrose Beach on the North Side. 

The Chicago Park District put up the fence after the mayor tweeted a picture of dozens of people standing at the beach Saturday near each other without masks. 

She called it “reckless behavior” and personally went out to the area near the Uptown neighborhood to make sure the gathering was broken up. 

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A park district spokeswoman said the fence will remain indefinitely to remind the public that the beaches and parks east of Lake Shore Drive are closed.  

The lakefront trail remains open. 

This closure comes as Chicago's and Illinois' coronavirus cases experience an uptick. Chicago has had 63,552 cases since the pandemic's start while Illinois has had a total of 194,080 cases, including 7,636 deaths.

In an effort to combat the virus' spread, Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced a new rule by the Illinois Department of Public Health that requires face coverings for businesses, schools and childcare providers. Businesses that fail to comply with mask coverings could get fined up to a $2,500 fine. 

It's called a pandemic, people. This reckless behavior on Montrose Beach is what will cause us to shut down the parks and lakefront. Don't make us take steps backwards. pic.twitter.com/FHxeYfH7Wf

— Mayor Lori Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) August 8, 2020