Hancock County

Dolly's Quick Stop in Kiln goes smoke-free; customer reactions mixed

TIM ISBELL/SUN HERALD 
 Dakota Jackson smokes outside of the front door of Dolly's in Kiln, Tuesday, Apr. 26, 2016. Dolly's has gone smokeless.
TIM ISBELL/SUN HERALD Dakota Jackson smokes outside of the front door of Dolly's in Kiln, Tuesday, Apr. 26, 2016. Dolly's has gone smokeless.

KILN -- Employees picked up all the ashtrays from the tables at Dolly's Quick Stop on Tuesday, but they aren't being washed or replaced -- they're going into the trash.

Store Manager Kacey Peterson said the Kiln convenience store is going smoke-free, effective immediately. Patrons and employees must light up outside and throw their butts away before coming through the front doors. She said she has received mixed reaction from the community about the new rule.

Some people gave her high-fives, but others weren't so happy about it, she said.

"The locals are saying they aren't going to come in here and sit because it was the only place they could sit and eat and smoke," she said. "But we feel that we're actually going to increase traffic flow through here because the non-smokers are going to come in here and eat and sit down."

Peterson said this is the first time since the store opened 25 years ago that smoking has been barred inside the building. She said the decision was sparked by a conversation she had with her father, co-owner Keith Lee.

"He voiced his concerns about the health of our cashiers," she said. Lee's eldest daughter, Tiffany Cowman, wouldn't bring her baby daughter into the store because of the smoke.

"Felicity has seen the inside of this store twice in 18 months because the smoke was so bad," Peterson said. "(Lee) felt like it was good to say 'No more smoking' because it's definitely not healthy."

Peterson said the smoking ban is just one big thing happening at the store this year. The owners also are planning a large parking-lot party in August to celebrate their 25th anniversary.

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