One bar sees smoking ban's effectsValley City, ND (WDAY TV) - Bar owners across the state can talk about how a state-wide smoking ban could possibly effect business.
By: Todd Kurtz, WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY
Valley City, ND (WDAY TV) - Bar owners across the state can talk about how a state-wide smoking ban could possibly effect business.
One Valley City bar owner doesn't have to talk about what could happen -- he lived it, going no smoking turned a hot spot into a dud.
It was April 1st, when the Labor Club in Valley City went smoke free of its own volition. But we were there today and people can light up a cigarette again, the owner says if he didn't revert back he could have lost the business.
Kerry Anderson, Owner/The Labor Club: "It was immediate.”
Anderson says that first month revenue dropped 40 percent, the next month the same thing.
Anderson: "I just kept waiting but didn't bounce back."
The few regulars who stuck it out, say it was unreal, a popular drinking joint in town drying up.
Verlynn Christianson, Customer: "All gone."
We were here in Valley City right before The Labor Club and The Eagles were about to go smoke free. The owners had concern then just didn't know it'd get that bad.
Anderson: "I had to cut bartenders hours, tip money."
The Eagles daily bar also dropped by 40 percent -- same story for the gaming inside the labor club -- and as fast as smoking came back here, it could go. The smoking ban in North Dakota is on the November ballot.
Anderson: “I don't like it."
If the state smoking ban passes, business might not drop as bad for Anderson. At that point all of the bars would be on the same level, when he went smoke free smokers had other bar options in town.