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Thread: Issue at Bill Ellis BBQ Wilson

  1. #1
    mattwestm
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    Issue at Bill Ellis BBQ Wilson

    I was in the mood for some BBQ, so me and the other half made a trip to Wilson to eat at Bill Ellis BBQ. I've been here several times OCing and nothing has ever been said. Of course, there are no gun-buster signs posted outside either.

    We get there, I pay for two buffets, two drinks, get my food and drink, have a seat and start eating. I get about half way done with my plate when a gentleman, Frank, from the kitchen approaches me and tells me that I am going to have to show him a "badge or a permit." I informed him that NC is an OC legal state and that no permit is required, nor do I have to show him one. He then tells me that he can offer me a refund or I can put my CZ-75 in the car. He also states that there is a sign outside saying "no carry"

    If I would have already finished the plate, I would have taken the refund and left, leaving with free dinner. Since I was with the other half, was starving, and had only eaten half my plate, I decided to lock it up in the car. On the way back in, I looked for a sign. There are two exterior doors that lead to a foyer and two interior doors that lead to the main part of the restaurant. No signs on any doors or windows. I thought about asking him to show me the sign, but I knew this would result in a sign definitely being posted.

    No one gave me a stink eye or anything, so I don't think a customer complained to him. I guess he just saw it since I was sitting near the buffet. Next time, (if I get this sorted out) I'll sit far away from the kitchen and buffet side.

    Another thing that really pisses me off about this event is that Bill Ellis BBQ is hosting a Friends of NRA event in their convention center (right beside the restaurant) this Thursday, March 3. I even saw the big sign on the way in the restaurant.

    My grandfather is an old friend of Bill and I might be able to get his direct number. I'm sure he's a second amendment supporter if he is allowing an NRA event to be hosted there this week. As of now, I'm not going back until I get this issue straightened out. Do you guys think I did okay? How would you have handled it?

    I didn't want to be too pushy with the guy since he was basically asking me to put the gun in the car or get out. I really wanted to get the refund, but the other 1/2 would have killed me and it would have been a wasted 40min trip.

  2. #2
    Regular Member sultan62's Avatar
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    If you had been alone, I would say you had handled it wrong. However, we must all make choices about what is more important, and deciding to make your SO happy was probably right in that situation, so long as you follow up after the fact.
    "They don't give a damn about any trumpet playing band
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  3. #3
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    i would of told my wife to suck it up...and went down the street to parkers.. lol.

  4. #4
    mattwestm
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    I probably would have just headed to Chick-fil-A or something since I didn't have any cash and Parkers requires cash. I prefer Bills BBQ, but not if they are going to give me trouble. It might have been because I'm a youngin'. Either way, I'll get this sorted out tomorrow. I was wanting to have the Wilson OC meets at Bills.

    Funny thing, after we left, she told me she would have supported my decision to leave.

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    The 'sign' he may have been refering to could be that old Federal one that says something to the effect the 'Unlicensed Posession of a firearm where alcohol is served is punishable by 10 yrs imprisonment....." I think the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commision still requires it because I see it even at places that don't sell for onsite consumption (ie Walmart). It's one of those old useless statutes dating from the Prohibition era attempting to find any means to punish organized crime. Since there's no such thing in your state (or mine) as 'licensed posession' it's a toothless tiger.
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  6. #6
    Regular Member sultan62's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattwestm View Post
    I probably would have just headed to Chick-fil-A or something since I didn't have any cash and Parkers requires cash. I prefer Bills BBQ, but not if they are going to give me trouble. It might have been because I'm a youngin'. Either way, I'll get this sorted out tomorrow. I was wanting to have the Wilson OC meets at Bills.

    Funny thing, after we left, she told me she would have supported my decision to leave.
    Sounds like you should have a conversation about what to do if it happens in the future.
    "They don't give a damn about any trumpet playing band
    It ain't what they call rock and roll
    And the Sultans...
    Yeah the Sultans, they play Creole"

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattwestm View Post
    I probably would have just headed to Chick-fil-A or something since I didn't have any cash and Parkers requires cash. I prefer Bills BBQ, but not if they are going to give me trouble. It might have been because I'm a youngin'. Either way, I'll get this sorted out tomorrow. I was wanting to have the Wilson OC meets at Bills.

    Funny thing, after we left, she told me she would have supported my decision to leave.
    thats true.. i forgot they dont use cards.. they also only have white teenage males working there. its kinda wierd actually. lmao i wonder if a priest owns it heheh..ok back on topic

  8. #8
    mattwestm
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    mark-in-texas: In NC, it's illegal to carry in a restaurant that serves alcohol. Fortunately, Bills doesn't serve alcohol.

    sultan: We just had a conversation about it and we've agreed that we will be taking the refund offer and leaving if it happens anywhere else. I'll be leaving an entire cart of groceries if it ever happens in a grocery store. I would have left tonight, but I drove from out of town specially to eat here and I had already half finished my plate. If I had just sat down, I would have definitely taken the refund and left. If I had finished, I definitely would have taken the refund and gotten a free dinner out of it.

    I'll try to call their customer support tomorrow and if that doesn't work, I'll call Bill himself. I don't like snitching on people, but apparently the guy thought he could make his own rules. I don't want him fired, but I do want him educated on carry. He could have also been a bit nicer about it.

  9. #9
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    I would go to the owner. After all , he has the final say on things.

  10. #10
    Regular Member sultan62's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattwestm View Post
    I'll try to call their customer support tomorrow and if that doesn't work, I'll call Bill himself. I don't like snitching on people, but apparently the guy thought he could make his own rules. I don't want him fired, but I do want him educated on carry. He could have also been a bit nicer about it.
    I wouldn't hesitate to contact Bill. It's his business to be run as he sees fit. I am sure he had to put in a lot of hard work and long hours to get it where he has, and I highly doubt he would appreciate one of his employees arbitrarily making up any rule. If it is his rule, then of course, you can always eat somewhere else.

    Businesses are made and broken on reputation and word of mouth. Though he's been there long enough that something like this won't hurt him in the long run, negative impressions will slowly kill any business. The best way to prevent this from happening is to nip it in the bud as early as possible, and I would be surprised if Bill didn't make it right.
    "They don't give a damn about any trumpet playing band
    It ain't what they call rock and roll
    And the Sultans...
    Yeah the Sultans, they play Creole"

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  11. #11
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    I would get some people together and OC to the NRA event.

  12. #12
    mattwestm
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    I spoke with Bill's wife over the phone earlier. She stated "Yes, I'm sure there are no signs outside prohibiting carry." She told me she would get it handled. She took down my name a number. I made sure to tell her that I have OC'd there many times before and never had a problem. I hope I hear back from her today about it. I don't expect any free food, but I do want the kitchen manager to be educated on NC open carry as well as Bill's policy with OC.

    If it turns out that they don't support OC in their restaurant, then they need to post a sign saying so. As much as I dislike signs, at least I know I can't carry in advance. I hate going in a place, only to be badgered about carrying.

    Like I said before, I think if I would have showed him a permit, he would have left me alone. I would of course never show anyone my permit, unless I'm required by law.

  13. #13
    Regular Member elixin77's Avatar
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    Looks like we need to get together and go eat there, make a strong supporting statement that if there isn't a sign, then its legal.

    Who's up for lunch in the next couple weeks?
    Taurus PT1911 .45 ACP. Carried in condition 1, with a total of 25 rounds.

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  14. #14
    mattwestm
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    Quote Originally Posted by elixin77 View Post
    Looks like we need to get together and go eat there, make a strong supporting statement that if there isn't a sign, then its legal.

    Who's up for lunch in the next couple weeks?
    Sounds like a plan. I was wanting to start hosting the Wilson OC meets here from now on. They have great food and a good selection of stuff. They accept cards too. Since my appetite was pretty much ruined last night, I'm wanting to give it another shot soon.

  15. #15
    Regular Member sultan62's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Good deal

    Quote Originally Posted by mattwestm View Post
    I spoke with Bill's wife over the phone earlier. She stated "Yes, I'm sure there are no signs outside prohibiting carry." She told me she would get it handled. She took down my name a number. I made sure to tell her that I have OC'd there many times before and never had a problem. I hope I hear back from her today about it. I don't expect any free food, but I do want the kitchen manager to be educated on NC open carry as well as Bill's policy with OC.

    If it turns out that they don't support OC in their restaurant, then they need to post a sign saying so. As much as I dislike signs, at least I know I can't carry in advance. I hate going in a place, only to be badgered about carrying.

    Like I said before, I think if I would have showed him a permit, he would have left me alone. I would of course never show anyone my permit, unless I'm required by law.
    It sounds like the situation has been effectively handled. I second the idea of an OC meet there to show your support, though I won't be likely to be able to attend.
    "They don't give a damn about any trumpet playing band
    It ain't what they call rock and roll
    And the Sultans...
    Yeah the Sultans, they play Creole"

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  16. #16
    mattwestm
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    Still haven't gotten a call back from her, but I'm not sure I should be expecting one. It would be nice to get a follow-up call, letting me know that she spoke with the kitchen manager and informed him that carry is not banned in their restaurant.

    When I go back, and if I have any problems, I'll say that I spoke with Bill's wife and that she stated there were no signs prohibiting carry. I'll also make sure that I sit far away from the buffet and kitchen entrance.

    Another quick question. Let's say I go back and he sees me OCing. Can he call the cops and get me for trespassing? His argument would be that he already informed me on a previous occasion that carry was banned (well first he said he needed to see a permit/badge, then he said there were signs outside banning carry).

    Anyone up for lunch at Bills in a week or two? If you are coming from out of town, it's well worth it!

  17. #17
    Regular Member elixin77's Avatar
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    I know its short notice, but what about the 5th? do this while its still fresh in the everyone's memory
    Taurus PT1911 .45 ACP. Carried in condition 1, with a total of 25 rounds.

    Vice President of Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, ECU Chapter

  18. #18
    Regular Member sultan62's Avatar
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    And sit near the kitchen.
    "They don't give a damn about any trumpet playing band
    It ain't what they call rock and roll
    And the Sultans...
    Yeah the Sultans, they play Creole"

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  19. #19
    Regular Member elixin77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sultan62 View Post
    And sit near the kitchen.
    definitely
    Taurus PT1911 .45 ACP. Carried in condition 1, with a total of 25 rounds.

    Vice President of Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, ECU Chapter

  20. #20
    Regular Member Room C's Avatar
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    Bill's food is good for those who haven't been. I'm for a meeting there, but have a conference to attend in Raleigh on the 5th.

  21. #21
    mattwestm
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    5th works for me.

  22. #22
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    5th is good!!! Im in !! what time??? dinner is better for me, cuz its a 35 minute trip, but i can do lunch!
    Last edited by JC_Biggs; 03-02-2011 at 03:31 AM.

  23. #23
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    i assume i just look for all the people with the guns?? LOL

  24. #24
    Regular Member elixin77's Avatar
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    Lets say, high noon on the 5th of March at Bill's BBQ place in Wilson. Sound good to everyone?
    Taurus PT1911 .45 ACP. Carried in condition 1, with a total of 25 rounds.

    Vice President of Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, ECU Chapter

  25. #25
    mattwestm
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    Works for me. Can you ask Dreamer if he wants to go? A few more OCers would be nice. I'll drive everyone on this trip.

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