After six weeks of being legally closed, cigar lounges in Michigan can reopen to patrons beginning Monday, March 22.

An order from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued today clarified that places with adequate ventilation will be able to allow for patrons to take their mask off to engage in activity that otherwise would not be possible with smoking. Specifically, the state will require those places to have “ventilation that meets or exceeds 60 ft3/min of outdoor airflow per person.”

While the retail portion of cigar stores were able to remain open, Michigan’s cigar lounges were closed in November when the state closed restaurant dining rooms, bars and other venues due to increasing coronavirus COVID-19 infections. On Feb. 4, the state issued an order that allowed for the dining rooms and bars to reopen but clarified that cigar lounges would not be legally allowed to reopen.

“We look forward to resuming the enjoyment of handmade cigars this Monday,” said Andy Hyde, co-owner of Nolan’s Cigar Bar in Traverse City and president of the Michigan Association of Premium Cigars and Pipe Retailers Association, in a press release. “Thanks to the Michigan cigar community for speaking up, and thanks to Director Elizabeth Hertel for taking time to learn about our investment in ventilation equipment. This quick resolution was only possible with the help of Senators Ananich, Nesbitt, Schmidt, and VanderWall, and their urgent communication with MDHHS. We will continue to do our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19 with proper spacing, hand-washing, cleaning and sanitation.”

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.