New COVID restrictions in effect Wednesday in Metro East


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – On Tuesday, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker tweeted about a national surge, calling out neighboring states like Missouri. He also mentioned two more regions triggered additional mitigations. One of those was Region 4 in the Metro East.

The stricter guidelines went into effect Wednesday.

On Tuesday night, Geo’s Wings in Belleville put their chairs up and pushed the tables to the side, preparing for another ban on indoor dining. 

“I would say we’ve lost half of our business,” said Karen Smith, owner of Geo’s Wings. “I don’t know what small businesses are supposed to do.”

“It has been absolutely a nightmare,” one of the restaurant’s lead bartenders, Dawn Marnan, said. “They open us up, for a couple of, 2 or 3 weeks, then we start getting business back, everybody’s happy, we’re all making money and then—bam—they just shut us down again.”

The owner said now she is thinking about every item that costs money, something she wouldn’t have bat an eye at months ago.

“It’s scary, I just told my husband when he turned the heat up, ‘don’t turn that heat up, there’s nobody in here to pay for the heat,'” Smith said.

The restaurant is preparing for another empty dining room. With colder weather, they aren’t sure if their patrons will want to sit outside. But, they have a firepit and a covered patio, just in case. 

Otherwise, the owner said they are blessed to have a drive-thru option to keep the revenue coming in.

“We have an outside patio, but nobody in their right mind is going to want to go outside and eat when its 35 degrees outside,” Marnan said.

“Bring a blanket if they want to help support us,” Smith said.

But some of Geo’s Wings regulars are trying to help ease the burden during this trying time by getting take-out. At least one customer brings his family about five times a week.

“We try to come through the drive-thru at least twice a week to help them out,” said Terri Krietemeyer, a frequent customer.

“But people like her, they keep coming in, I appreciate my faithful customers,” Smith said.

Region 4 includes seven counties: St. Clair, Madison, Monroe, Clinton, Bond, Washington, and Randolph. Region 4 has already faced restrictions twice before.  

Mitigation measures taking in Regions 4 and 10 include:  


  • No indoor service  
  • All outside bar service closes at 11:00 p.m.  
  • All bar patrons should be seated at tables outside  
  • No ordering, seating, or congregating at bar (bar stools should be removed)   
  • Tables should be 6 feet apart   
  • No standing or congregating indoors or outdoors while waiting for a table or exiting  
  • No dancing or standing indoors  
  • Reservations required for each party  
  • No seating of multiple parties at one table  


  • No indoor dining or bar service  
  • All outdoor dining closes at 11:00 p.m.  
  • Outside dining tables should be 6 feet apart  
  • No standing or congregating indoors or outdoors while waiting for a table or exiting  
  • Reservations required for each party   
  • No seating of multiple parties at one table  

Meetings, Social Events, Gatherings  

  • Limit to lesser of 25 guests or 25 percent of overall room capacity  
  • No party buses  
  • Gaming and Casinos close at 11:00 p.m., are limited to 25 percent capacity, and follow mitigations for bars and restaurants, if applicable  

On Tuesday, Illinois reported 4,000 new COVID-19 cases as well as 46 additional deaths. That brings the total in the state to 382,985 cases, including 9,568 deaths as of Oct. 27.

 The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity is 6.4%.  Last Tuesday, the positivity rate was 5.5%.

As of Monday night, 2,758 people in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19.  Of those, 595 patients were in the ICU and 241 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

FOX 2 Newsletters

Sign up for a newsletter from FOX 2 to get updates about news and weather. We offer daily headlines, breaking news, severe weather, and forecast emails.

About FOX 2 News

FOX 2 and KPLR 11 in St. Louis cover the news in Missouri and Illinois. There are over 68 hours of live news and local programming on-air each week. Our website and live video streams operate 24/7. Download our apps for alerts and follow us on social media for updates in your feed.

President Harry Truman said: “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That spirit is alive and well at Fox 2. Our teamwork is on display each and every day.

Our news slogan is: “Coverage You Can Count On.” We quite frankly are too busy to worry about who gets the credit. Our main concern is serving the viewer.

We go where the stories take us. Whether it be Washington, D.C when a Belleville man opened fire during a congressional baseball game practice or to Puerto Rico where local Ameren crews restored power after more than 5 months in the dark.

Coverage You Can Count On means “Waking up your Day” with our top-rated morning show. From 4:00 am-10:00 am we are leading the way with breaking news. But our early morning crew also knows how to have some fun! Our strong commitment to the communities we serve is highlighted with our Friday neighborhood shows.

Our investigative unit consists of three reporters. Elliott Davis focuses on government waste, Chris Hayes is our investigative reporter, and Mike Colombo is our consumer reporter. They work in unison with the news department by sharing resources and ideas.

We continue to cover breaking news aggressively and relied on our seasoned journalists to make a difference with the stories we covered. The shooting of Arnold Police Officer Ryan O’Connor is just one example of that. Jasmine Huda was the only reporter who had exclusive access to the O’Connor family during his amazing rehabilitation in Colorado.

Last, but certainly not least, FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are committed to covering local politics. We host debates among candidates and have the most extensive presidential election coverage. Our commitment to politics isn’t just during an election year. We produce two political shows that air every weekend.

Latest News

More News