University creates in-person campus events, Urbana ends temporary indoor dining ban

Three+students+sit+at+a+table+outside+of+Lundgren+Hall+on+Sunday.+Champaign+County+reported+136+new+cases+of+COVID-19+on+Sunday%2C+bringing+the+total+number+of+active+cases+in+the+county+to+323.

Ryan Ash

Three students sit at a table outside of Lundgren Hall on Sunday. Champaign County reported 136 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, bringing the total number of active cases in the county to 323.

By Amrita Bhattacharyya, Staff Writer

In a Massmail released Wednesday, the University introduced in-person, socially distanced campus events and urged students to continue following COVID-19 safety measures. 

In a previous Massmail released on Sept. 2, the University asked students to limit in-person activities, and the on-campus COVID-19 positivity rate decreased. 

“But, we are still very much at a tipping point, and new cases could quickly and completely erase all of your progress and hard work,” Chancellor Robert Jones wrote in the most recent Massmail. 

The new in-person events are being organized by the Office of Student Affairs, Department of Intercollegiate Athletics and various RSOs.

“While we can’t yet celebrate, you will be able to carefully and responsibly resume some COVID-19-limited versions of activities you all miss,” Jones wrote. 

The first event will be a double feature movie night with the showings of Black Panther and Hidden Figures at Memorial Stadium held Friday at 9 p.m. 

Starting next week, double feature movie nights will continue every Thursday, with every Friday and Saturday featuring live entertainment at Memorial Stadium. 

All events will require face coverings and the maintenance of social distancing.

The University is also asking students to continue social distancing, report gatherings of 10 people or more, test twice a week and follow directions from the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District. 

“No parties. Small, safe gatherings only. Smart decisions,” Jones wrote.

The Massmail also stated that some students will be asked to test three times a week if determined they are at a “high risk” for contracting COVID-19. 

As the University is introducing some in-person activities, the City of Urbana announced the temporary ban on indoor dining in campus-area restaurants will expire Wednesday at 5 p.m. 

According to a news release Wednesday, Urbana Mayor Diane Marlin announced the temporary ban will not be extended. Campus-area restaurants will be permitted to resume indoor dining per the Restore Illinois Phase 4 Guidelines and City of Urbana Emergency Order 20-08

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