Monthly Archives: July 2013

Taco Tinga reopens and replaces three Taco Tico restaurants

WICHITA — Taco Tinga is back open along with what looks to be three Taco Tico restaurants, though they’re now Taco Tingas, too.

“We’re currently working on getting the signage changed,” says David Eron, an attorney for the new owner, HAK Group.

The state seized and then reseized the assets of several of Mahmood Karim’s Taco Tico restaurants along with his Taco Tinga for failure to pay taxes.

Karim briefly acknowledged he’s back at the restaurants under a new agreement.

Jeannine Koranda, a spokeswoman for the state, says, “We have not reached any agreement. It would have to be under new ownership.”

In a follow-up call, Karim deferred further questions until after the lunch hour. Then, a woman who identified herself as Mrs. Karim left a voicemail message to say any further calls would have to be to her attorney, David Eron.

Eron won’t discuss the ownership of HAK Group except to say that Mahmood Karim isn’t involved. He won’t say if Mrs. Karim is an owner.

“Again, I can’t disclose ownership issues.”

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You don’t say

“Yeah, our second store’s opening before our first. Go figure.”

Marilyn Wright on how she and her husband, Hervey, decided to reopen the original Paradise Donuts near Central and Zoo Boulevard on Aug. 8 before debuting their new Paradise Donuts and Coffeehouse near Maple and Maize in October

J.P. Weigand & Sons to close rental division

WICHITA — A year ago, J.P. Weigand & Sons created Weigand Residential Rentals & Management to capitalize on a rapidly growing rental market, but now the division is folding.

“It was just a financial decision,” says Weigand CFO Peggy Ward.

Does that mean it wasn’t performing as well as hoped financially?

“Since it’s a financial decision, that would insinuate it was a profitability issue,” Ward says.

Last summer, Weigand officials said the success that other real estate companies had with similar divisions prompted them to start one, particularly to counter an environment of sluggish home sales.

Ward is hesitant to say much more now.

“We’re kind of limited on what we can say at this point.”

The division will close as of Sept. 10.

Ward says she can’t yet say what will happen with current Weigand rentals.

“At that time, we’ll have another solution that we can announce.”

Lucky’s Vape & Smoke owner to open Lucky’s Vape Lounge in Delano

WICHITA — What appears to be Wichita’s second electronic smoking lounge is opening this week.

First came Big E’s Vapor Room on South Rock Road.

Now, Lucky’s Vape Lounge is opening in the building to the east of the Monarch, which is at the roundabout in Delano.

“The electric thing has caught on so huge,” says Matthew Powell, who is opening the lounge.

He owns Lucky’s Vape & Smoke, a smoke shop, at 4100 E. Harry.

“We transitioned it to, like, half and half,” Powell says of selling electronic and regular cigarettes. “The electronics really caught fire.”

That was the inspiration for the lounge, which is having a soft opening on Friday and a grand opening on Saturday.

“It’s also kind of like a hangout,” Powell says.

He says he’ll sell pastries and other food, juices and nonalcoholic drinks. Powell says he’d like what he serves to have a healthy component, “which is just kind of the point of electronic cigarettes.”

Terry Newman considers opening a hitting facility at the former Crestview Marine site

WICHITA — In January, when Have You Heard? reported that Crestview Marine had closed, the new owner of the building wasn’t quite ready to reveal himself.

Now he is.

Terry Newman has purchased the 5,000-square-foot building near Central and Greenwich, but what he’s going to do with it remains to be seen.

As the Papa John’s Pizza franchisee views it, he could do several things with the space.

“We just weren’t going to pass up an opportunity to be over there,” Newman says. “It’s a great location.”

He says it’s an easy-in, easy-out site.

Option No. 1, Newman says, is a possible baseball hitting facility. He has two sons, ages 13 and almost 16.

“My boys are going to play baseball for many years to come,” he says.

“We’re trying to figure out the right way to do it,” Newman says of a possible facility. “How do you build it? What do you build? What do you put in?”

He says there’s plenty of room for his trailers and other Papa John’s equipment at the site.

“It’s great to have the space.”

To do the hitting facility, Newman would add another building.

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You don’t say

“I feel like I’m a tax collector.”

Corporate Caterers of Wichita owner Ben Arnold, who says he accidentally underpaid on state taxes by about $16,000 (which is in addition to the previously reported almost $300,000 he owes in federal taxes)

Cathy Hetterscheidt to reopen Duke’s Bar & Grill as Harry Street Grill & Saloon

WICHITA — Duke’s Bar & Grill, which was just off the northwest corner of Harry and Seneca, is reopening with a new name.

Cathy Hetterscheidt, who has Cathy’s Breakfast Club and Cathy’s Westway Cafe, is opening the business in the middle of August. She originally planned to call it Dukette’s but then decided against it.

“The more we thought about it, that’s probably not the right name.”

She decided Harry Street Grill & Saloon is.

Hetterscheidt plans a full menu, including pizza and steaks, along with live music.

She says she’ll share plans for another new business soon.

“My next adventure is a concession trailer.”

Burrow gaming and gift store to expand with new meeting space

UPDATED — Derrek Burrows is such a friend to geeks, he’s almost doubling the size of his gaming store for them.

The Burrow has been in 1,100 square feet at 180 S. Rock Road, which is behind Wendy’s across from Towne East Square, for a couple of years.

“We have gifts for geeks,” says Burrows, a self-professed geek.

“I am, and I have been pretty much all my life.”

The store sells games that appeal to people who are into science fiction, anime and Steampunk, among other things. There are some more traditional games as well.

Burrows also offers the store as a meeting space for groups, which is why he’s expanding into an extra 900 square feet next door.

“It’s a space that will be for hobby groups and special interest groups,” he says.

For instance, there’s a “Doctor Who” fan group that meets at the Burrow once a month.

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Thunderbird Tactical to embark on $5 million expansion in northeast Wichita

An artist’s rendering of what the new Thunderbird Tactical will look like.

UPDATED — Most business people would consider it a pretty big leap to do what Ryan and Jennifer Pennock are about to do.

They’re planning to move their Thunderbird Tactical from a 1,000-square-foot retail space in Delano to a more than 26,000-square-foot store with a shooting range on the east side.

Ryan Pennock is almost nonchalant about it, though.

“This was always our end game,” he says.

The Pennocks opened their store three years ago at 406 N. Seneca. Ryan Pennock says it was a different economic climate for borrowing then.

“We just didn’t have enough capital to do this facility,” he says of what they’re now planning.

“We’re pretty proud of what we’ve been able to do,” Pennock says. “We’re busy, busy, busy,”

The Pennocks aren’t sharing precisely where they’re planning to build just yet, but Ryan Pennock says it’s in northeast Wichita and has easy access to K-96.

“It’s a big difference,” he says of what’s in the works.

The Pennocks have been contracting with an outdoor range for customer training. With the new location, there will be 24 shooting lanes, all of which will be air conditioned and have HEPA filtration.

That’s significant, Pennock says, because the store will particularly cater to professionals, such as workers who want to pop in over their lunch hours for shooting practice.

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You don’t say

“All I can hope for at this point is the fact that chicks dig scars.”

City Council member Jeff Longwell, who needed three stitches on his lips after getting headbutted in his regular Monday morning basketball game