The owners of a Houston restaurant are urging parents to monitor their children’s behavior by passing out “rule cards” after they are seated.
Along with their menus, parents of young kids can expect to receive a colorful message from Ana Beaven and Charlie McDaniel of Cuchara Mexican restaurant to keep their children under control.
The rule cards read “Children at Cuchara don’t run or wander around the restaurant. They stay seated and ask their parents to take them to the restroom. They don’t scream, throw tantrums or touch the walls, murals, windows or anything of the other patrons. They are respectful!”
McDaniel told ABC News he and Beaven agreed to pass out the cards following an incident five months ago with an unruly child.
“A family came in — a husband and a wife and their son — and they just let him roam unaccompanied,” McDaniel said. “He took a quarter out and scratched the walls. He did Tic Tac Toe on three walls.”
The mishap cost the restaurant $1,200 to pay for the sheet rock repair and a new paint job. The owners also paid their employees for the days off to do the repairs. The family of the boy gave Cuchara a one-star rating out of five on Yelp, claiming the restaurateurs “discriminate against children,” McDaniel said.
“We’re not trying to start any ‘anti-kid’ campaign,” McDaniel said. “We just expect them to behave within the social norm, not invading personal space, crawling under tables or touching people’s stuff.”
McDaniel said Cuchara recently celebrated Dia de Los Muertos — a Mexican holiday on Nov. 1 and 2. But a child took down items from the traditional altar meant to honor the dead.
“In Mexico, there is a real passion for things from the past and memorabilia,” McDaniel said. “They respect and honor it so it just bothers people when things are touched.”
But McDaniel said he has noticed some improvements and hopes more children will improve their etiquette.
“Most parents are more aware of how their kids are behaving,” he added, “but we have had a few incidents where parents have thrown [the cards] on the floor.”
Despite the resistance, the “rule cards” will be a mainstay at Cuchara.