The management of multiple movie theaters around Chicago have sent updates on the matters of the moment. Here are edited excerpts of their releases.
THE MUSIC BOX
Preserving the health and safety of patrons in light of COVID-19 is the top priority for the Music Box and we wanted to let you know what’s happening at the theater. We are monitoring the daily updates from the city of Chicago, the State of Illinois and the CDC, and acting in accordance with evolving best practices and recommendations. As we continue our 70mm Film Festival, as well as regular screenings, we want to lay out things we are doing internally:
Cleaning – We are increasing the frequency and degree of our regular cleaning procedures throughout the day. We are disinfecting the following hand-contact surfaces after the start of every film: door handles, countertops, tables, bathrooms, water fountains and computer screens. Overnight we are doing disinfecting of all bathroom surfaces, as well as seat armrests, on top of regular overnight janitorial duties.
Music Box Staff – All staff have been retrained on how to thoroughly wash hands, as well as reminded about the specifics regarding hand washing frequency and timing. All of our staff have paid sick leave and use it, every one of our staff know that if they come in sick, we will send them home immediately.
Our patrons are encouraged to take simple, common sense steps to remain safe:
Hand Washing – Please use our bathrooms to wash your hands. They are stocked up on soap and paper towels.
Social Distancing – If you are seeing a show that’s not crowded, try to sit at least six feet away from other patrons. We plan to limit our seating capacity on every show so this can happen more easily.
Staying Home – If you feel sick, just stay home. The Music Box has been around for ninety years, we will be around for another ninety years, so you have plenty of opportunities to see a film in the future.
Landmark’s highest priority is and has always been the health and safety of our guests and employees. With the emergence of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the increasing health concerns, we want you to be assured that Landmark Theatres is taking this situation very seriously. We are monitoring all reporting closely, following the guidelines set by the World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and are complying with instructions from local, state and federal officials wherever applicable.
While we maintain extremely high standards and take great pride in the cleanliness of our theaters, it is more critical than ever. In addition to our comprehensive daily cleaning procedures, we are taking enhanced steps to ensure both guest and employee safety. Our staff is wiping down seats following each showtime and cleaning surfaces including kiosks, door handles, concession stands, bars and touchscreens multiple times per hour. Additional cleaning regimens are being conducted routinely in restrooms. These steps are being taken in accordance with CDC recommendations.
We are also committed to taking care of our employees. We continue to provide them with up-to-the-moment guidance from public health officials and information so they can keep themselves and their families safe.
We have no higher priority than ensuring the health and safety of our customers and employees.
Paul Serwitz, President, Landmark Theatres
Dear members of The Block Museum of Art community,
To ensure the health and safety of our community, Northwestern University continues to closely monitor the evolving outbreak of coronavirus/COVID-19. To support preventative care efforts on campus and beyond, we have canceled or postponed the remainder of our public events through April 15, 2020. The Block Museum galleries are currently open to the public. If any changes occur, we will make updates to our website.
Lisa Graziose Corrin, Block Museum of Art Ellen Philips Katz Director
UPDATE MARCH 14: Museum closed.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published later this year.