By CHARLENE DEAN
To hear the name, Heath’s Laff Factory, one would think it’s a comedy club. In fact, it’s a restaurant located in the Stagestop Lounge and Casino on Stagecoach Road.
Heath Campbell, a local entrepreneur who has had his own rock-climbing wall business, among other things, said he had a quick takeover of the former Romero’s Northside restaurant on Oct. 11, but the grand opening is this weekend. Jorge Romero is Campbell’s father-in-law and owns two more Romero’s locations here.
Campbell said he has several things going for him in this new venture. “I kept all of Jorge’s employees,” he said, “including his cook.” He added laughing, “Jorge still comes in for breakfast, so the food must be good.”
To the modified Mexican menu, Campbell said he has added bar food, such as chicken wings with a homemade spicy sauce, a Philly cheesesteak that he said his customers say is “awesome,” freshly-cut French fries and pizza.
He isn’t entirely new to the restaurant business. He said, “I’ve been working off and on for Jo’s Pizza since I was a kid.” Because of his experience with Jo’s, he is also comfortable offering stromboli and an antipasto salad as well.
Campbell mentioned he has to be mindful of those with allergies and people who eat vegetarian only when he is making certain salad dressings and some sauces.
The grand opening will introduce his new menu items to the public with food and drink specials, door prizes, and if patrons spend $10, they will get a raffle ticket for dinner for two worth $25.
He intends to run the grand opening specials through next weekend.
Campbell said he named the restaurant Laff Factory because he feels people here don’t pick a restaurant based on the type of food served. “I know when my wife and I go out to eat the answer to the question ‘Where do you want to go?’ always gets ‘I don’t know, what do you want to eat?’ as a response.” He says the choice is made based on what attracts their interest. “I wanted to give them no specific menu — just good food — and something to talk about.”
Asked if he ever intended to incorporate a comedy show, he said, “eventually.”
Heath’s Laff Factory is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and until 9 p.m, Friday and Saturday.
The restaurant serves breakfast beginning at 9 a.m., Saturday and Sunday mornings. Call 537-2100 for additional information.