CHICAGO - It was a sight Thursday that we had not seen in a while at Wrigley Field -- Cubs fans in the stands!
Familiar faces were there, too. Cook County Health Commissioner Doctor Allison Arwady got to throw out the first pitch and Illinois Department of Public Health Director Doctor Ngozi Ezike joined her as well.
A few thousand fans celebrated Opening Day at "The Friendly Confines."
While Opening Day always feels like a holiday, after an entire season in which no fans were allowed in the ballpark, this year was special.
"Excited to be here. Break the ice on this whole pandemic thing and get back to baseball and everything," one man said.
But you could see the impact of the pandemic inside Wrigley, which was limited to 25% capacity. Fans in groups of two or four were scattered around the park.
Usable seats were marked with tape, while the others were tied shut with a plastic cord.
Fans encountered a touchless ticket system to get inside. Concession stands featured marks on the ground for social distancing and bottles of hand sanitizer were strapped to steel columns around the ballpark.
The pandemic dominated the opening day ceremonies, with the heads of public health for both the city and state throwing out the opening pitch.
But as happy as they were to be at Wrigley, many fans left early because of the bitter cold.
"It’s a cold one. We were vaxxed and we were masked but the weather got to us," one man said. "It’s my toes that are frozen. Everything else is OK."