(Update: As of 10/1/2007 a new Minnesota statewide smoking ban is beginning to have a negative financial impact on bars and restaurants outside of the metro area, the metro area closings started to occur after Mpls, St. Paul, and Bloomington smoking bans in 2005)
According to this 2004 end of year Star Tribune article only 14 establishments closed in '04.....the last full year without a smoking ban. (Scroll down to The party's over heading) Since implementing smoking bans the Twin Cities area has seen 150+ closings......the facts speak for themselves, smoking bans are very bad for business.
Minneapolis, Bloomington & St. Paul MN. hospitality establishments out of business since the smoking ban began 3/31/05...... 100 closed in 20 months. Updated list in no particular order (includes updates from MN Monthly, Pioneer Press, Twin Cities Business Journal, KMSP 9 news, WCCO, and more)
1) Hop's Maple Grove, MN.
2) Denny's Restaurant Plymouth, MN.
3) Copelands Minneapolis
4) TGIF Brooklyn Center, MN.
5) TGIF Minneapolis, MN.
6) Nick & Tony's Minneapolis, MN.
7) America's Original Sportsbar Mall of America Bloomington, MN.
8) Jillian's Mall of America Bloomington, MN.
9) Park Tavern Bloomington, MN.
10) Larry's Lounge in Long Lake, MN.
11) Goodfellow's Minneapolis, MN.
12) Chang O'Hara's (bankruptcy protection) St. Paul (Now the Happy Gnome)
13) Mainstreet Bar & Cafe Maple Grove, MN.
14) Bilimbi Bay Minneapolis, MN.
15) Bilimbi Bay Apple Valley, MN.
16) Bilimbi Bay Eden Prairie, MN.
17) MN Sports Cafe
18) Jacobs 101 Minneapolis
19) Café Di Napoli Minneapolis
21) Southtown Bingo Bloomington, MN.
22) Italiani's Plymouth, MN.
23) 3 Muses
24) 13 Moons Minneapolis, MN.
25) 510 Restaurant Minneapolis, MN.
27) Chez Foley Wayzata, MN
29) El Rey de Oro
30) Mpls. Café Minneapolis, MN.
31) Soul City Supper Club
32) Tonic of Uptown Minneapolis, MN.
33) Porter's Minneapolis, MN.
34) Molly Quinn's Minneapolis, MN. (local media covers this closing)
Breakaway Bar -(Luke is still hanging on as best he can, stop by and say hello)
35) Minnehaha Grill
36) Margarita Bella Minneapolis, MN.
37) Olive Garden
38) Knuckleheads Comedy Club Mall of America Bloomington, MN.
39) Asian Infusion, St. Paul, MN.
40) Big E.’s Soul Food, Minneapolis, MN.
41) Chet’s Taverna, St. Paul, MN.
42) Ciatti’s, Maplewood, MN.
43) Jazzmine’s, Minneapolis, MN.
44) Katsu Sushi, St. Paul, MN.
45) Le Bambou, Minneapolis 46) Mangia, Minneapolis, MN.
47) Margaux Limitée, St. Paul, MN.
48) Marketplace Café, Minneapolis, MN.
49) Red, Minneapolis, MN.
50) Rockin’ Lobster, St. Paul, MN.
51) Bobino's Starlight Lounge, Mpls, MN.
52) Wazobia Nigerian Cafe, Minneapolis
54) Player's Mall of America Bloomington, MN
55) Shamrock's W. 7th St. Paul (rumor is this one is a personal vendetta by some pro-smoking ban city council members in St. Paul against an owner who testified against the ban. In other words the city refused to extend a license on a technicality, but that's just the rumor from some St. Paul hospitality business owners, feel free to correct me on this one Mr. Thune)
56) Mojito's St. Louis Park, MN.
57) Stasius Bar Minneapolis, MN (reopened under new mgmt?) Bob Moffitt Communications Dir. for American Lung MN once referred to Stasiu's as his "old stomping grounds". I doubt he shed a tear though in realizing his role in contributing to their demise, because as the Lunger tells us no bars or restaurants have gone out of business due to the smoking bans. In fact, to hear the media & Bob tell it, none of these 76 establishments went out of business at all, they've simply closed their doors for an extended period of time to count all the profits that the smoking bans have bestowed upon them.
58) Little Jack's Minneapolis story here.
59) The Buttery St. Paul
60) Cracker Barrel Brooklyn Park, MN.
61) Perkins St. Louis Park, MN.
62) Howie G's Plymouth, MN.
63) Jake's Moundsview, MN.
64) Dixie’s Calhoun Minneapolis, MN.
65) Hamlin’s Cafe
66) Loring Grill
67) Pineda Tacos Minneapolis, MN.
68) Sidney's Minneapolis, MN.
69) Sidney's Minnetonka, MN.
70) Sidney's St. Paul, MN.
71) Sidney's Edina, MN.
72) Zeno's Minneapolis, MN.
73) Zeno's Eden Prairie, MN.
74) Louis XIII Edina, MN.
75) Bobino's Minneapolis (not same as Starlight Lounge)
76) Diner Minneapolis, MN.
77) Big City Tavern
78) Tiburon Minneapolis, MN.
79) Viking Bar Minneapolis, MN. (And now for the real shocker the uber liberal Star Tribune writes a page 2 story which attributes it demise to the smoking ban.......the Star Tribune until now seemed as though they were in the pocket of pharmaceutical nicotine interests.)
80) Sharx Nightclub Minneapolis, MN.
81) Peter's Grill Minneapolis, MN. Incidentally, Peter's Grill was one of the establishments which was about to buy Smokeeter air cleaners from me prior to talk of the smoking bans. Thank god the city council spared them from having to make that investment. 82) Mike's Bar St. Paul, MN (read more here)
83) Billy's Lighthouse Long Lake, MN.
84) Over the Rainbow St. Paul, MN. (read more here)
85) Boom Minneapolis, MN. (read more here)
86) Sophia's Minneapolis, MN.
87) Pizza Pie & I Minneapolis
88) Grandma's Saloon & Eatery Plymouth, MN.
89) The Little Wagon Minneapolis -update: reopening 3/07 under new management
90) Ricky's Loft Minneapolis
91) Bennigan's Maplewood, MN.
92) Homestead Restaurant Golden Valley, MN.
93) Pickle's Lounge St. Paul, MN.
94) LeVain Minneapolis this closing is also mentioned on their website.
95) The Carousel St. Paul, MN.
96) Irv's Minneapolis, MN.
97) Sully's Minneapolis "...closing Jan. 31, 2007 due to drop in business because of smoking ban..." -comment provided by Sully's management to Clearing the Air in a telephone interview.
98) Main Event Bar Minneapolis
99) Odaa Minneapolis
100) Robert Lee Restaurant Minneapolis
101) Baja Riverside Bar & Grill Minneapolis. This article points out how a record number of closed bars & restaurants leads to a dangerous trend of unsafe neighborhoods.
102) Sports Break Bar St. Paul
103) The Quest Minneapolis (for those unfamiliar, this is one of the largest nightclubs in the Twin Cities, once owned by Prince) story here in City Pages
104) Five Restaurant & Street Lounge Minneapolis. The Star Tribune has the story here, but will typically remove the link within days.....the Star & Sickle is embarrassed that the smoking ban agenda, which they endorsed, is destroying the hospitality industry here in record numbers.
105) Auriga Minneapolis
106) Urban Wildlife Bar and Grill, Minneapolis
107) Popeye's Minneapolis
108) All Stars Bar Spring Park, MN
109) Westrum's Tavern Minneapolis, MN. Southwest Journal tells the story, though they don't tell you what we all know.....Judy Westrum's 40 year old business really began to decline once the smoking ban was enacted. The medias' intentional suppression of the financial damages inflicted upon the people in the hospitality industry by government smoking bans is an absolute crime.
110) Decoy's/AlleyCat, NE Minneapolis
111) Italian Pie Shoppe St. Paul, MN.
112) The Lake Inn, Minneapolis
113) Trikx St. Paul, MN closing announcement
114) Timberlodge Steakhouse Roseville
115) Andy's Garage St. Paul, MN.
116) Fhima's St. Paul, MN.
117) French Press St. Paul, MN.
118) Andy's Tap Bloomington, MN. story in the Star Tribune . But true to their pro-smoking ban agenda, the Star Tribune would never report that Andy's or any of the other 118 bars & restaurants were forced to close due to revenue losses from the smoking bans. Andy's survived 42 years in business....suddenly and mysteriously the Strib would have you believe the customer base for Andy's Tap just disappeared. With 42 years business experience for Andy's, 70 years for Porter's Bar, 40 years for Westrum's Tavern.......it must have been an unprecedented, colossal, and historic event which forced these businesses to close; and it was...........the smoking bans.
119) Backyard Bar & Grill Bloomington, MN
120) Bridgeman's, Richfield
121) Riverside Restaurant, Minneapolis
122) The Poodle Club, Minneapolis
123) TGI Fridays Brooklyn Park, MN.
124) Coyote Grille Brooklyn Center, MN. Mgmt. here holds no punches as they boldly report the smoking ban led to their demise more here
125) A Rebours St. Paul, MN. more here from the Pioneer Press (they (Pio Press) are known for removing their links within days)
126) Margaux St. Paul, MN. closing announcement here
127 ) Chico Chica St Paul, MN
128 ) Ruam Mit Thai St. Paul, MN
129 ) Cafe of the Americas, Minneapolis, MN
130) Willie's Wine Bar Minneapolis, MN.
131) Old Chicago Minneapolis, MN. (Comment from a reader) Just heard on the news that Old Chicago in DT Minnepolis will close due to the "decrease of traffic in the area." No mention of the smoking ban, but I have heard from bartenders at Old Chicago that the "decrease in traffic" started with the smoking ban.
132) Shelly's Restaurant St. Louis Park, MN has closed as announced in the Star Tribune.
133) Roberts on 10 Maplewood, MN.
134) DD's Cafe Crystal, MN.
135) TimberLodge Steakhouse St. Louis Park, MN.
136) DooLittle's Plymouth, MN.
137) DooLittle's Coon Rapids, MN.
138) TGI Friday's Plymouth, MN.
139) Copper Bleu Lakeville, MN.
140) Pizza Nea Minneapolis, MN.
141) Rush (formerly Rodeo) Cottage Grove, MN.
142) T.F. Boonies Detroit Lakes, MN.
143) Dale's Beltrami County, MN.
144) Git R Done Beltrami County, MN.
145) Mason's Beltrami County, MN.
146) Northwoods Steakhouse Beltrami County, MN.
147) Pour Willie's 71 Bar Beltrami County, MN.
148) Union Station Beltrami County, MN.
149) Ember's Mankato, MN. Co-owner Nicole couldn’t fight back tears while talking about how much she’s going to miss her co-workers and customers.
150) Larry’s Bar in Fergus Falls, MN. story here
151) The Broken Axe Moorhead, MN. Management stated by phone that the smoking ban was the greatest single contributing factor for the loss of revenue and subsequent closing. 12/31/07 was their last night of business.
152) VFW Post 8854 St. Paul, MN. (this was the last remaining VFW in St. Paul)
153) Northern Lights Bar and Grill Montevideo, MN
154) Detoy's Family Restaunt Granite Falls, MN
155) Langesson's Benson, MN
156)- Buffet Holdings Inc. Eagan, MN. owns Country Buffet, Ryan's and Tahoe Joe's brands, 626 establishments in total, files for bankruptcy.
157) - Maurer's Parkside Lounge Rick Maurer said, "... the smoking ban dealt it a deadly blow, taking away more than a quarter of its clientele." (the quote and link is to a Pioneer Press article 2/7/08, and as part of mainstream media's concerted effort not to report any negative aspects of the smoking ban; is subject to be removed at any time)
158) Back to the 50's Ramsey, MN.
159) Don Pablo's Minnetonka, MN.
160) 4 Alarm Bar & Grill Rockford, MN.
161) New Delhi Bar & Restaurant Minneapolis, MN.
162) Richard's on Main Norwood / Young America, MN.
163) Emma's Restaurant & Lounge Minneapolis, MN.
164) Cafe Limon Minneapolis, MN.
165) Chang Bang Minneapolis, MN.
166) 700 Express Minneapolis, MN.
167) Soba's Minneapolis, MN.
168) Cafe 44 Minneapolis, MN.
169) Pane Vino Dolce Minneapolis, MN.
170) Don Pablo's Eagan, MN.
171) Don Pablo's Woodbury, MN.
172) Baker's Square Plymouth, MN.
173) Oakies of Oakdale, MN. -owner Charles Senkler informed Clearing the Air "....the bottom dropped out of both food and beverage sales with the State Wide Ban....."
174) Isabel's Minneapolis, MN.
175) Baker's Square Minnetonka, MN.
176) Joe's Crab Shack Maple Grove, MN.
177) Baker's Square Burnsville, MN.
178) Baker's Square St. Paul, MN.
179) Baker's Square Minneapolis, MN.
180) Baker's Square Stillwater, MN.
181) Baker's Square St. Anthony, MN.
182) Bentley's Vadnais Heights, MN.
183) Bingo Plus Inver Grove Heights, MN.
184) Hillcrest Bingo St. Paul, MN.
185) Midway Bingo St. Paul, MN.
186) Cottage Grove Bingo (formerly Fantasy Cruise Bingo) Cottage Grove, MN. the closing of bingo halls due to smoking bans, documented here, is particularly damaging because bingo halls provided tens of millions back to the community in charitable funding for hockey leagues, little league baseball, etc.......not anymore; thanks to the Nicoderm special interests and the non-profits they funded. (By the way I personally designed and provided Cottage Grove Bingo a $35,000+ state of the art, air filtration system......theirs was the best of the best)
187) Romano's Macaroni Grill Burnsville, MN.
By the way, 187 closings are approximately 1/3 of the total liquor licenses in Minneapolis.....so you can see that it is an unusually high percentage of closings that have ocurred since smoking has been banned here.
188) Passage to India Minneapolis, MN.
189) Lotus Restaurant Minneapolis, MN.
190) Temple Restaurant Minneapolis, MN.
191) Romano's Macaroni Grill Rochester, MN.
192) Joe's Crab Shack Roseville, MN.
193) Finnegan's Pub Delano, MN.
194) Grandma's Saloon Minneapolis, MN. closing 5/22/08 -The president of Grandma's Corporation, Brian Daugherty, said legislation like the smoking ban has deteriorated the state of hospitality jobs in Minneapolis. The ironic thing here is that this quote and link comes from liberal U of M online publication the MNDaily, whose members from day one have argued that smoking bans are not to blame for hospitality closings.
195) Foundation Nightclub Minneapolis, MN.
196) Minnehaha Lanes St. Paul, MN. .....had complained in the past that the smoking ban, which took effect in St. Paul more than a year before it reached the rest of the state, had driven a primary source of income — bowling leagues — away.. more here.
197) Campiello's Minneapolis, MN. (13 year history comes to an end with its closing 6/20/08)
198) Alleygator's / Spectrum Lanes Maple Grove, MN.
199) Sweet Lorraine's Minneapolis, MN.
200) The OZ in Elko, MN.
201) The Norseman Cokato, MN.
*list of closures in Hennepin & Ramsey Counties in Minnesota since smoking ban implementation 3/31/2005, as reported by members of the public, and when possible verified with the respective city.......reports of bar / restaurant closures due to smoking bans apparently are not being reported by the Star & Tribune.....perhaps because of their editorial agenda in favor of smoking bans.
Apparently the pro-smoking ban activists lied to lawmakers and the employees who would later lose their jobs. when they stated that smoking bans were good for business.
The pharmaceutical nicotine industry which funds non-profit organizations to lobby in favor of smoking bans, continue to tell lawmakers that smoking bans are boom for business. However, the business owners previously mentioned, and laid-off employees tell a different story.
What motivates Nicoderm, Nicoderm CQ, Nicotrol, and Chantix drug makers Johnson & Johnson Company, Pfizer, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to continue funding smoking ban efforts? Nearly $1 billion in smoking cessation products sales annually for starters.
Johnson & Johnson’s private foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), has provided hundreds of millions of dollars to smoking ban lobbyists; such as the American Cancer Society, the American Lung Association, American Non-Smoker’s Rights, etc. The motive appears to be a rent seeking agenda, J & J’s wholly owned subsidiary ALZA manufactures Nicoderm and Nicoderm CQ for GSK; additionally J & J’s purchase of Pfizer home healthcare products unit means J & J also profits from Nicotrol product sales. Nicoderm, Nicoderm CQ, and Nicotrol products are alternative tobacco products, which directly benefit from smoking bans. Here in Minnesota, Blue Cross Blue Shield, as well as ClearWay MN crowed about the three-fold increase in demand for alternative nicotine products after smoking ban legislation was implemented. Perhaps a boycott of all Johnson & Johnson products is the proper response to their lack of ethical business practice.
But that's the dilemma our local politicians find themselves in........on the one side is the rich and powerful special interest group demanding laws that financially benefit their marketing interests.....and on the other side is the individual whose rights they were elected to uphold and serve. I guess it all comes down to a simple question: are they a servant of the people, or a slave to big money interests?
Oh.....and then there are these pesky little air quality test results that prove secondhand smoke concentrations are 2.6 – 25,000 times safer than OSHA workplace air quality standards.
Clearing The Air: Air quality testing and secondhand smoke.....an update
Clearing The Air: BMJ published air quality test results show secondhand smoke is 2.6 - 5,000 times SAFER than OSHA indoor workplace AQ regulations
Clearing The Air: American Cancer Society test results for secondhand smoke prove SHS is 532 - 25,000 times safer than OSHA regulations
Clearing The Air: Johns Hopkins air quality testing of secondhand smoke proves yet again that levels are hundreds of times safer than OSHA regulations
It's clearly time to reverse these anti-business smoking ban laws, in light of the fact that politicians are influenced by distorted and omitted data from the pharmaceutical nicotine industry and the non-profit organizations in their employ. Especially when you consider the tens of thousands of individuals now unemployed due to these onerous and unnecessary laws.