Everyone must wear a mask when interacting with workers.

EAST MOLINE, Ill. — Some local businesses worry about what this could do to their business.

Marguerite Dasso from Jennie’s Box Car isn’t willing to risk another closure, “We can’t afford that. We’re Lucky we made it through the first shut down.” 

So she`s not taking the new restrictions lightly, “Part of being in Illinois is having to wear a mask.”

Jennie’s Box Car opened last November, four months in COVID-19 hit, forcing them to close for six weeks.

“If we have a staff member coming over to your table just put the mask over your face while you’re talking to them.”

As of August 26th, Illinois customers must wear face masks as they walk to their table and they must keep them on when interacting with servers, both in and outside.

Gary Schmooke from Smokeys Country Diner fears the new mandate will drive business away. “Who is going to sit there, with a mask on?”

“It just ain’t going to be a nice experience for our customers,” he says.

Feeding people is in Gary’s blood, “I have taken money out of my own pocket to make this work the first time.” The third generation restaurateur worries he’ll lose customers as restrictions tighten up.

“It’s probably going to shut down more small businesses like mine.”

Janet Hill from the Rock Island Health Department says locals could see things tightening up even further.

“Rock Island county positive rate has been hovering right below that 8%,  which would put us in that warning status.”

The restrictions apply to any establishments that serve food, that includes recreational facilities, museums and entertainment venues.

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