The Chicago Sports Spectacular, scheduled for the first weekend in June in the same building that is scheduled to host the 2021 National Sports Collectors Convention, has been cancelled.
The Florida-based company that operates the show announced the move on Wednesday morning, citing the uncertainty over the state of large public gatherings in the state of Illinois. The show had been scheduled for the Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont.
Illinois is currently in Stage 4 of a planned 5-Stage reopening. The state plans to move to a “Bridge Phase” between the two final stages. Stage 5 would essentially be a return to normal, with large convention facilities allowed to reopen for large numbers of guests. However, cases and hospitalizations have been increasing and any plans to move toward the Bridge Phase—let alone Stage 5– appear to be on hold. With barely over two months before the show’s scheduled dates of June 4-6, promoters opted to cancel. They say they’re hopeful to reschedule the show sometime later this year.
Organizers of the National Sports Collectors Convention, which is also scheduled to take place at the Stephens Convention Center July 28-August 1, are still monitoring the state’s plans. However, the latest news does not appear to be trending in a positive direction. As is the case in a number of states, the virus appears to be making a bit of a comeback with hospitalizations up in the Chicago area after weeks of decline.
“As long as new hospital admissions continue to increase, the state will not advance to the Bridge Phase and on to Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois Plan,” officials from the Illinois Department of Public Health said in a statement. “The number of cases of COVID-19 has seen an increasing trend as well. Health officials continue to urge all residents to continue to mask up, socially distance, and avoid crowds to reduce transmission and bring the metrics back in line to transition to the Bridge Phase.”
Less than 20 percent of Illinois residents have been fully vaccinated as of now but additional mass vaccination sites have opened in the Chicago area in recent days, including one adjacent to Wrigley Field.