CHICAGO, Ill. (WTVO) — Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker confirmed Thursday that the state will move into the Bridge Phase of the Restore Illinois plan on Friday, May 14th.
The Bridge Phase is the final step before the full Phase 5 reopening, expected to arrive on Friday, June 11th.
Under the Bridge Phase, there are expanded capacity limits for businesses, dining, offices, events, conferences and gatherings.
“Illinoisans have worked so hard over the past year and a half to keep their families and neighbors safe, and reaching Bridge Phase means that we’re closer than ever to a return to normalcy,” said Pritzker. “To keep up this progress, I urge every eligible Illinoisan – now including 12 to 15-year-olds – to get vaccinated as soon as possible.”
“The more people who are vaccinated, now including our youth as young as 12-years-old, the quicker we can end this pandemic,” said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “While more than 62% of adults in Illinois have received at least one dose of the vaccine, we still need more people to get vaccinated. Please talk with your doctor or health care provider if you have questions about the vaccine and know the facts so that you can make the most informed decision.”
In addition, the administration announced it would be giving out 50,000 free tickets to Six Flags Great America in Gurnee and Six Flags Hurricane Harbor in Rockford to newly vaccinated residents, in an effort to encourage “youth in underserved communities” to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
To make sure the tickets have broad reach, the state is sending Illinois National Guard mobile vaccination teams to their Gurnee location starting the first weekend in June: Saturday the 5th and Sunday the 6th. If turnout is high, vaccination teams will return to continue offering this lifesaving protection to residents. Six Flags Great America will announce additional details in the coming weeks.
Throughout the pandemic, Six Flags has been All In for Illinois, putting the health of workers and visitors first,” said Pritzker. “I know it’s been a difficult year – but that just makes it all the more exciting to be back at the park. Thanks to the life-saving power of vaccinations, it feels once again like summer’s in the air.”