i have to admit to being pretty jealous of people living in cities with smoking bans for bars and restaurants. as virginia is pretty in the pocket of big tobacco, it'll likely be a while before we see any substantial change on the issue. i do appreciate the efforts of the state to help people limit their exposure to second-hand smoke.
for virginians looking for smoke-free places to chow down, the virginia department of health website offers a nice service. here you can find a listing of restaurants that are smoke-free, by county - just click on the "non-smoking restaurant statistics link" and look for your county.
percentage of restaurants that are non-smoking:
fairfax county: 89%
richmond city: 56%
sure, it requires a bit of effort and forward planning, but i appreciate the gesture. its a good step forward in the campaign against cigarette smoke & its many, many ill effects.