Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker calls crowded wedding “very irresponsible” amid spike in COVID-19 deaths

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker criticized the hosts of a large wedding in the Chicago area as the state saw a near-record number of COVID-19 related deaths reported Thursday.

State officials said 238 deaths were reported on Wednesday, although figures reported each day could include deaths that happened in earlier days but were not immediately reported to the state. Another 192 deaths were reported Thursday, CBS Chicago reports.

The elevated figures come a day after a wedding in Northbrook, Illinois, where hundreds of people gathered without masks, according to a CBS Chicago report. 

“I’m deeply concerned for the people who attended that wedding, I understand that people were in very close proximity from one another, I understand that those people will go home or back into their communities and may have infected other people, and that is very concerning to all of us,” said Pritzker.  He urged each guest to isolate and get a test.

Pritzker said Cook County, which is where the hotel is located, is taking the lead on enforcement. 

Illinois moved to Tier 3 safety measures on November 20, which includes a ban on indoor service at bars and restaurants; the closing of theaters, casinos and museums; a cap of 10 attendees at funerals; and the closure of hotel meeting and event spaces, among other measures.

Pritzker called the decision to go forward with the wedding after the introduction of more stringent safety guidelines “very irresponsible, and it’s also irresponsible of the hotel to host an event like that. They too have breached the rules and they, too, should be held responsible.”

According to a CBS Chicago report, a statement released by Hilton Chicago/Northbrook General Manager Holly Allgauer-Cir said that while the 150-person wedding was booked prior to the state’s latest, more stringent safety measures, “we sincerely regret allowing this gathering to proceed and our family apologizes to our guests, employees, and the Chicagoland community.

The Illinois Department of Public Health has reported a total of 12,830 deaths from the virus since the pandemic began. The state also reported 10,959 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 on Thursday, bringing the total to 759,562 cases since the start of the pandemic.

While deaths from the virus have continued to trend upward since early October, when a new surge of the pandemic started in Illinois, new cases started trending downward over the past few weeks. However, they remain far higher than they were at the start of October, CBS Chicago reports.

Illinois is averaging 9,870 new cases per day over the past two weeks, compared to 11,914 per day over the previous two weeks. That’s still more than four times the average of 2,452 cases per day during the first two weeks of October.

As of Wednesday night, 5,653 virus patients were hospitalized in Illinois, including 1,170 patients in intensive care, and 693 patients on ventilators.

While hospitalizations seem to have started trending downward since peaking at 6,175 on November 20, there are still far more COVID-19 patients

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Elliot Page’s Wife Emma Portner Calls Him ‘a Gift’ After He Comes Out as Transgender

Elliot Page is getting support from his wife. The same day that the 33-year-old actor, formerly known as Ellen Page, came out as transgender, his wife, Emma Portner, expressed her love on Instagram. 

“I am so proud of @elliotpage,” Portner wrote alongside a screenshot of Page’s statement. “Trans, queer and non-binary people are a gift to this world.”

“I also ask for patience and privacy but that you join me in the fervent support of trans life every single day,” she added. “Elliot’s existence is a gift in and of itself. Shine on sweet E. Love you so much.”

Portner, who announced her marriage to the actor in January 2018, also commented on Page’s announcement post, writing, “I love you so much, Elliot.”

After Page’s announcement, celeb support poured in for the actor.

“Sending love to my friend, @TheElliotPage,” Ellen DeGeneres wrote. “You inspire me with your strength, courage and honesty.”

“Elliot Page’s words here are so beautiful and so eloquent, and he is reminding me that we can all be brave and joyful, even when things are scary,” Anna Kendrick tweeted. “And this year especially, that reminder is such a GIFT. Sending them love/praise/gratitude/well-wishes etc etc etc etc.”

Alyssa Milano, Olivia Munn and Natasha Lyonne also expressed their support for Page.


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‘I stand by women having a boss attitude’: Rita Ora calls for equal rights for female artists | People

'I stand by women having a boss attitude': Rita Ora calls for equal rights for female artists

Rita Ora says women in the music industry still have to fight “every day” for equal pay and rights.

The 30-year-old singer-and-actress is proud to have sustained a successful career, but says there is still a long way to go before female stars are treated as equals to their male counterparts.

Speaking to Numero Berlin magazine – of which she is the cover star – Rita said: “We as women are fighting every day to have equal pay, to have an equal voice, to be able to not be judged, to express our femininity in a way where it doesn’t undermine our power.

“Those are things that we fight for every day. Gender equality is something that I stand for. I’m very passionate about it.

“I stand by equal rights, I stand by freedom of speech and I stand by women having a boss attitude.”

She added: “For me, the defining moment is sustaining my career. Being able to still sit here today, take incredible photos, be able to talk about my career 10 years on.

“I think that’s a big achievement for artists. And to be able to sustain something for me and have the next chapter of my life and still be in the business is really amazing.”

As well as her chart success, Rita has starred in the ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ franchise, had a cameo in ‘Southpaw’ alongside Jake Gyllenhaal and voiced Dr. Ann Laurent in ‘Detective Pikachu’.

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Naperville Mayor’s Niece Calls Out Uncle on Twitter After Defending Decision to Attend Daughter’s Wedding

A woman identifying herself as Naperville Mayor Steve Chirico’s niece posted on Twitter Sunday calling out her uncle for attending a family wedding in Florida.

a woman standing in front of a building:

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Kristin Chirico, former Buzzfeed personality and current influencer, used her Twitter platform to say her uncle was “not sorry” and “should be held accountable” for attending the gathering.

Steve Chirico defended his decision to attend a family wedding out of state after a photo of the mayor circulated widely on social media.

In the photo, the Naperville mayor can be seen standing in a group at his daughter’s wedding, which took place recently in Naples, Florida.

None of the individuals in the photo were wearing masks.

The photo sparked controversy on social media after it was posted by one of the mayor’s relative.

In a statement, Chirico says that he and his family were tested for coronavirus prior to leaving for their trip to Florida, and all tested negative.

“It was an outdoor wedding and reception with a total of 53 guests,” Chirico said. “Upon my return to Naperville, I will be quarantining and testing again.”

The images of the mayor stirred up anger on social media amid the ongoing surge of coronavirus cases in numerous parts of the country, including Florida. Americans are being urged not to travel for Thanksgiving as a result of the pandemic, with more than 12 million Americans having contracted the virus since the pandemic began.

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Cuomo calls secret Hasidic wedding in Brooklyn ‘blatant disregard of law’

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo slammed a Hasidic synagogue for a massive secret wedding in Brooklyn earlier this month, calling it a “blatant disregard of law.”

“If that happened …It was a blatant disregard of the law. It was illegal. It was also disrespectful to the people of New York,” Cuomo said Sunday. “The city should do a robust investigation.”

According to videos obtained by the New York Post, a large crowd of maskless guests were seen packed shoulder-to-shoulder in Yetev Lev temple in Williamsburg on Nov. 8. The Satmar synagogue has a maximum capacity of 7,000.

Amid a recent surge in COVID-19 cases and in defiance of state safety restrictions, organizers of the nuptials bent over backwards to hide the wedding of Yoel Teitelbaum, grandson of Satmar Grand Rabbi Aaron Teitelman, from “the ravenous press and government officials,” according to an account in the Yiddish newspaper Der Blatt, a publication of the Satmar sect.

“Due to the ongoing situation with government restrictions, preparations were made secretly and discreetly, so as not to draw attention from strangers,” the paper reported in its Nov. 13 edition. “In recent weeks, organizers worked tirelessly to arrange everything in the best way possible. All notices about upcoming celebrations were passed along through word of mouth, with no notices in writing, no posters on the synagogue walls, no invitations sent through the mail, nor even a report in any publication, including this very newspaper.”


The latest gathering comes after the state ordered the cancellation of another Williamsburg wedding last month for a grandson of Satmar Grand Rabbi Zalman Teitelbaum, a brother and rival of Aaron Teitelman. It was expected to draw a crowd of up to 10,000 guests. 

“If it turns out that, because we stopped that wedding, the reaction was, ‘well, we’ll have a secret wedding,’ that would be really shocking and totally deceitful from the conversations that I had, because I had personal conversations with members of the community,”  Cuomo added.


The governor later noted that, to his knowledge, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration was investigating the incident. 

“It’s my information the city is investigating,” Cuomo said. “They should investigate, and if 7,000 people were at a wedding, I’m sure they’ll be able to figure it out, and then we’ll bring the full consequences of legal action to bear.”

City Hall spokesperson Avery Cohen confirmed to FOX News that the city is conducting an investigation into the incident and will “hold those accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”

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Jimmy Kimmel Calls Giuliani the ‘Gift That Keeps on Grifting’

Welcome to Best of Late Night, a rundown of the previous night’s highlights that lets you sleep — and lets us get paid to watch comedy. We’re all stuck at home at the moment, so here are the 50 best movies on Netflix right now.

This week, it was reported that Rudy Giuliani had asked to be paid $20,000 a day for his work managing President Trump’s court challenges to his loss in the election. That would have made Giuliani among the most highly compensated lawyers anywhere, even as Mr. Trump’s lawsuits fail one after another.

“Wow, he’s the gift that keeps on grifting, isn’t he?” Jimmy Kimmel joked Tuesday night.

“I’m sure the secretary of state was terrified. I mean, how intimidating is Lindsey Graham?” — JIMMY FALLON

“Lindsey Graham had better hope Donald doesn’t see this, because on the Senate floor today, Lindsey Graham sauntered over and you see he gave a congratulatory fist bump and pat to Kamala Harris, our vice president-elect. He’s wearing a mask, he’s fist-bumping Kamala — it’s almost like Lindsey Graham is an unscrupulous opportunist who blows with whichever way the wind goes.” — JIMMY KIMMEL

Conan O’Brien, who announced Tuesday he will be leaving late night for his own weekly show on HBO Max, shared some of the comments he’s been getting about his Covid-era hair.

Dan Levy, the star of the sitcom “Schitt’s Creek” who is also featured in People magazine’s latest “Sexiest Man Alive” issue, will appear on Wednesday’s “Tonight Show.”

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Linda Robson calls I’m A Celeb star Shane Richie ‘annoying’

Linda Robson has opened up once more about her mental health "meltdown". (Photo by Robin Pope/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Linda Robson doesn’t hold back on her thoughts about I’m A Celeb. (Photo by Robin Pope/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Loose Women star Linda Robson is not too impressed with the new series of I’m A Celebrity…including her colleague Coleen Nolan’s ex-husband Shane Richie who she has branded “annoying”.

Robson made the comments during a discussion about the I’m A Celeb launch on the ITV lunchtime panel show on Monday (16 November).

The Birds of a Feather actor said: “I think there’s a couple of people that are gonna be a little bit annoying, like Shane Richie. I mean, he’s not a comedian but he’s just trying to be.

Shane Richie grateful for I’m A Celeb as pandemic has left him ‘skint’

“He’s just being a little bit annoying, he’s been voted for the first trial so a lot of people are seeing that.  

“It just takes you a little while to get used to the campmates.”

Shane Richie in a promotional still for I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! (ITV)
Shane Richie in a promotional still for I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! (ITV)

Nolan was not part of the panel to respond to the comments but it might have made interesting TV if she were.

Someone Richie would have proven a hit with is his family, wife Christie and their children.

Mrs Richie posted a still from the show of him apparently sending a signal to his kids to tell them he loved them.

The caption reads: “Shane’s special signal to the children, telling them he loves them.”

It wasn’t just Richie that fell short of Robson’s expectations of the first episode.

She added: “Well obviously like everyone, I was really excited because Christmas isn’t Christmas without I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!  

“The countryside was absolutely beautiful, the castle was absolutely gorgeous. They’ve got proper beds and everything, but I don’t know, it just lacked atmosphere.”

Robson was a campmate herself, finishing ninth back in 2012, and she shared an interesting incident from her time on the show.

Read more: I’m A Celeb return watched by almost 11m viewers in second biggest show launch since 2013

She said: “The first night I got in there, I was in a sleeping bag. I thought I needed to go to the toilet but they turn all the lights off, it’s pitch black so all you hear is the noise. 

“So in the end I just wet myself in my sleeping bag. I thought, ‘I’m not getting up on my own, without a lamp, to go to the toilet’, so I just did it and then I had to wash everything out the next day.”

Loose Women airs weekdays from 12.30pm on ITV.

Watch: Loose Women panel tries I’m A Celeb eating challenge

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Tracee Ellis Ross Named Fashion Icon at People’s Choice Awards 2020, Calls Her Mom the True ‘Icon’

Tracee Ellis Ross shows off two looks while attending the 2020 E! People’s Choice Awards on Sunday (November 15) at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, Calif.

The 48-year-old Black-ish actress wore a brown suit on the red carpet and then fittingly changed into a second look to accept the award for Fashion Icon of 2020.

Tracee made sure to thank the magazine industry, stylists she’s worked with (including Karla Welch), designers, her father, and her mother Diana Ross, who she called “the icon herself.”

“Not only for her great parenting … but also her example, her sense of style, her epic closet and her glamour that introduced me to the power of fashion,” Tracee said.

She also talked about how she’d go on stage to collect the beads that fell off her mom’s dresses “so that I could have pieces of the magic, seeds of the fashion dream that I was cultivating for myself.”

Also pictured inside is Tyler the Creator, who presented the award.

FYI: Tracee is wearing a Schiaparelli suit and jewels with Christian Louboutin shoes on the carpet. On stage, she is wearing a full Alexander McQueen look with Ana Khouri jewels.

15+ pictures inside of Tracee Ellis Ross at the awards show…

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Bride-to-be demands to use uncle’s house (and bedroom) for wedding day, calls it ‘family property’

Other people’s houses aren’t hotels.

While most brides dream of getting married in the perfect location, those locations aren’t always available. Unfortunately, as one uncle just found out, that doesn’t mean that the bride-to-be will accept that.

A homeowner in Souther Europe says that his niece is demanding to use a home he owns for her wedding and force his own family out of the house.

A homeowner in Souther Europe says that his niece is demanding to use a home he owns for her wedding and force his own family out of the house.

Posting under the name EurCas-ThAw, a seemingly frustrated homeowner shared his story on Reddit’s forums. According to him, he and his wife bought an old farmhouse in Southern Europe 28 years ago. Since then, the house has been nicknamed “the castle” by his family due to a small turret on the property.

After spending years fixing it up for their retirement, “the castle” has apparently become a very scenic location, which hasn’t gone unnoticed by the owner’s family.


“Recently my niece got engaged and held an engagement party on Zoom at the weekend,” the homeowner wrote. “When asked what ideas they’d had so far she excitedly told me they’d actually been planning to ask us if they could hold the wedding at The Castle.”

The story continued, “I was a bit taken aback but didn’t want to outright refuse. I joked it would have to be a rather small wedding since they’d struggle to fit more than 25 people in the gardens. She gushed that she’d already thought it through and they’d put up canopies in the field nearby (we don’t own that land) and if all the guests stayed in hotels in the town she would arrange transport for ‘us all to get to the villa.’”


While the homeowners weren’t excited about the idea, they weren’t thrilled to hear the next part of the bride-to-be’s plan. He wrote, “she plans to use the master bedroom as the bridal suite and for the wedding party to have the remaining rooms. My wife, children and I would have to stay elsewhere.”

Not surprisingly, this was a deal-breaker. Apparently, however, this did not go over well with the bride-to-be or her mom (the homeowner’s sister). When the homeowners refused to allow the wedding on their property, “both (the bride-to-be) and my sister blew up at me telling me I was ruining her wedding and she’d always dreamed of marrying at The Castle. My sister even said since I used my inheritance, it’s ‘family property,’ which is obviously ridiculous.”


Reddit users seemed to agree that it was not unreasonable for the homeowners not to let someone take over their house for a wedding.

“Wait, there are people that believe that because you bought something with inheritance money, it’s a family property?” one user questioned. “I hope the mom is sharing everything she did with the inheritance then.”

Another user added,

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CSU Northridge women’s basketball calls off season after opt-outs deplete roster

Cal State Northridge will not compete in women’s basketball during the 2020-21 season after six players elected not to participate due to coronavirus-related concerns and a seventh was unable to enter the country due to travel restrictions, the school announced Thursday.

That left the Big West program with only six available players.

“As a team, we came to the difficult decision that we will not compete this year,” Northridge players said in a statement released by the school. “Since there are only six of us and the physical health concerns from the wear and tear of a full season with back-to-back competition, we are prioritizing our health and safety during this global pandemic. We love the game, and we are competitors. We will use this time to focus and prepare mentally and physically to compete at a high level and full capacity for the 2021-22 season.”

The school said the team began practice with 12 players, while an unnamed 13th player was unable to enter the country. Six players elected to opt out of the season after practice began.

“I concur wholeheartedly with this decision,” team physician Dr. Eric Sletten said. “It would not be a safe endeavor to compete at the NCAA Division I level with such reduced person power. Foregoing the 2020-21 season is best for the health and safety of these student-athletes. Of course, our staff will remain available to attend to their physical and emotional needs.”

The school said all scholarships would be honored during the current academic year. Most classes are being conducted through virtual learning.

An NCAA ruling last month granted all winter sports athletes an additional year of eligibility and an additional year in which to complete it. Northridge has only one senior listed on its roster and did not specify if she would be allowed to compete in 2021-22.

Northridge had not announced a nonconference schedule but was slated to begin Big West play at home against Cal State Fullerton on Dec. 27 and Dec. 28.

Longtime coach Jason Flowers resigned in April after Northridge went 12-19 last season. He was not replaced on a permanent basis, with former associate head coach Lindsey Foster taking over as the interim head coach for the 2020-21 season.

“We engaged and listened to the concerns of our team and feel this is the best decision for their health, safety, and well-being,” Foster said. “As we continue to navigate these uncertain times, our staff will continue to find creative and safe ways to develop our players. We are united in this approach and we will use this time to get ready for the 2021-22 season.”

Northridge joins Bethune Cookman as Division I programs not competing in women’s basketball this season.

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