Southaven fires up new no smoking law

SOUTHAVEN, Miss. — As you walk into Huey’s in Southaven, you’ll hear, “Welcome to Huey’s, take a seat wherever you’d like. The whole restaurant is non-smoking.”

Starting Tuesday, that’s true across all of Southaven. The city made it illegal to light up inside restaurants.

Ashley Robilio’s family owns this restaurant and knows this change is a big deal for some of their customers.

“If you’re a smoker, I think this is going to be a big adjustment for you,” she said.

Robilio says it’s so far so good when it comes to customer feedback about the ban.

Rick Thome said he’s more likely to eat there because of it.

“I won’t be eating in a cloud of smoke. It won’t get all over my clothes,” he said.

But in Mississippi, eating and smoking are a common pairing. Now patrons who want to light up must get used to stepping outside.

WREG spoke with several smokers who say this ban is not a big deal during the daytime, but at night, when they’re out with friends, it’s annoying to have to step outside to have a cigarette.

Robilio is interested to see how the weekend crowd handles the news.

“Some of our regulars who are smokers that come in for happy hour in the evening. I am curious to see what happens to them,” she said.

She says a lot of restaurants held out on banning smoking because they didn’t want to lose customers to their competition. Now that it’s a city-wide rule, they don’t have to worry about that.

Thome added, “It’s a healthier choice. Better for the kids who come in here and everybody.”


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