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Toby Keith's Restaurant Bans Guns and Angers the Internet

Hillary Dixler Canavan is Eater's restaurant editor and the author of the publication's debut book, Eater: 100 Essential Restaurant Recipes From the Authority on Where to Eat and Why It Matters (Abrams, September 2023). Her work focuses on dining trends and the people changing the industry — and scouting the next hot restaurant you need to try on Eater's annual Best New Restaurant list.

Country music star Toby Keith has angered some gun supporters because his new Woodbridge, VA restaurant has banned guns with a sign in the window statiny "NO GUNS PERMITTED." Fox 5 DC reports that restaurant owners in Virginia have the right to decide whether guns will be permitted on their property, but that it is legal "for citizens to strap on a weapon and go into a bar or restaurant, as long as the weapon is clearly visible." Pro-gun supporters have expressed their anger on Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill's Facebook page, calling the decision "disheartening" and claiming things like "The best place to create havoc is where no one is armed." Others point out that Keith is alienating some of his fan base.

The restaurant posted a defense of their policy on Facebook, saying "we at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill, with guidance from the State of Virginia and based on insurance regulations, have adopted a no weapons policy. It is our desire to provided a safe, enjoyable and entertaining experience for our patrons and staff." The restaurant has received plenty of Facebook approval for their message, most to the tune of "booze and guns don't mix well." Of course, this isn't the first time a Virginia restaurant operator has had to make a decision regarding open carry; and some Virgina restaurants even offers discounts to folks carrying guns. In the Fox 5 video below, Keith's restaurant seems to be thriving despite the backlash, with a 20-minute wait and local support. Go, watch:

Video: No guns policy at new Toby Keith restaurant in Woodbridge

· No guns policy at new Toby Keith restaurant in Woodbridge [Fox 5 DC via HuffPo]
· All Guns Coverage on Eater [-E-]

Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill

15200 Potomac Town Place, Woodbridge, VA 22192