POCAHONTAS, Ark. (KAIT) - An area restaurant is closing its dining room after restaurant owners say people would not comply with face mask requirements.
According to a Facebook post from Halcomb Taco Casa, the restaurant closed its dining room effective June 24.
“We are sorry to have to do this, but due to the disrespectfulness and non-compliant customers wearing their face masks like the CDC guidelines enforces us to do, we will be closing our dining room as of today (6/24),” the post noted. “We have tried our best to work with the public and be as respectful as we can to keep our dining room open for you.”
However, customers will be able to use the drive-thru and receive to-go orders.
“I’ve got good customers that this is affecting, just because of a few bad apples,” Doris Halcomb, Co-Owner of Taco Casa said.
Halcomb’s Taco Casa has been in Pocahontas for over 30 years. When the pandemic hit, they closed the dining room until they were given guidelines and a green light to open again.
When they did reopen with a capacity of around 40 people and with mask requirements, some customers did not take too well to the guidelines.
“So many people [were] harassing the waitresses, saying things that were not kind,” Halcomb said. “I don’t feel like my waitresses, or anybody that’s working for me deserves that. We try to protect the customer by wearing masks and gloves, and they don’t want to respect us.”
Halcomb says they have been trying their best to follow the guidelines. She decided it would be easier to have the lobby closed to prevent the arguments by those who feel they shouldn’t have to wear a mask.
She says she wants to protect not only her staff but customers as well.
Speaking of customers, Crystal Richmond of Walnut Ridge, a regular at Taco Casa, says she’s disappointed but understands the decision.
“I really hated it because we loved to go in there and sit down,” Richmond said. “But if people [are] not going to obey the rules, I understand, I just don’t want them to close forever so, I understand. I don’t want them to get fined.”
Richmond, along with Halcomb, wanted to remind everyone to wear masks and follow the social distancing guidelines. Halcomb says to bear with them, and they will get through this.