Illinoisans head to Indiana to spend money as stay-at-home order continues

(The Center Square) – While dining rooms remain closed in the state, many Illinoisans are crossing the border to go out to eat.

Many restaurants in Illinois are preparing for outdoor dining starting on May 29, but indoor dining rooms must remain closed. As it stands now under Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s five-phase reopening plan, indoor dining rooms in Illinois won’t be able to open until the end of June.

Restaurants in Missouri have reported a steady flow of people coming over from Illinois to have a meal. The same holds true for Indiana.

Bonnie Wright, the co-owner of the Beef House in Covington, Indiana, said business has been great mostly because her restaurant is full of Illinoisans on a daily basis.

“If you went out and drive around the parking lot, almost all the plates are from Illinois,” Wright said. “Everybody says that they are just glad to get out and sit down and have a meal, and we sure appreciate them all coming.”

Kim is a waitress at the Covered Bridge Restaurant in Eugene, Indiana. She said she has been waiting on customers from Illinois since the restaurant opened last week.

“A lot of them. A lot more than Indiana people, and they are so thankful for dine-in,” she said.

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