Philadelphia announced indoor dining can return on Sept. 8, but officials said the date could be delayed again if coronavirus cases don’t continue to decline. So far, Philly is still seeing a decrease in confirmed COVID-19 cases. But these cases are not just another version of the flu. Science shows that unlike the flu, COVID-19 can harm many organs, including the heart and the brain, as well as the lungs.

If you’re looking for something to do this weekend, check out the BlackStar Film Festival, a drive-through food truck festival, or our events calendar for even more ideas.

The coronavirus is not just another version of the flu. It’s much more complex and deadly. Initially, experts thought COVID-19 was primarily a respiratory illness. But now, it’s clear this virus can hurt not only the lungs, but the circulatory system, liver, pancreas, kidneys, heart and even the brain.

My colleague Marie McCullough explains how COVID-19 can affect all these organs in your body, accompanied by illustrations from Cynthia Greer.

Philadelphia announced Thursday that indoor dining will be allowed to resume on Sept. 8, but it’s not set in stone. Outdoor dining has been allowed since June, but the city has continually pushed back the date for indoor dining. The virus is much more likely to be transmitted in indoor environments.

Health Commissioner Thomas Farley warned that allowing indoor dining is dependent on positive cases continuing to decrease over the next two weeks. So, it’s possible the date could change again.

There’s a lot of information out there about voting in the presidential election, and not all of it is reliable. But we’re here to help. We have a breakdown of everything you need to know about voting in Pennsylvania this year, by mail and in person.

But if you have a question that we haven’t answered yet, ask us. Our reporters will look into it and update the page, so be sure to bookmark it for later.

What you need to know today

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Love this serene shot of Independence Hall and the national historical park. Thanks for sharing, @shot_by_jim!

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout out!

That’s interesting


Rob Tornoe's coronavirus cartoon for Friday, Aug. 21
Rob Tornoe / Staff
Rob Tornoe's coronavirus cartoon for Friday, Aug. 21

“Overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic is a multifaceted challenge that will take high-quality inpatient hospital care, intense research, and preventive medicine. Assuaging the pain and suffering caused by gun violence demands a similar effort.” — writes Corbin Pomeranz, a physician at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, about how homicides aren’t the only tragic cost of Philly’s gun violence epidemic.

What we’re reading

Your Daily Dose of | Pennsylvania state parks

Trevor Nordquist, a graduate student at Slippery Rock University, north of Pittsburgh, visited every state park in Pennsylvania — all 121 of them, in 303 days. He embarked on this journey when he realized that he didn’t really know his home state at all. My colleague Jason Nark asked him all about his adventure.