Daily Archives: April 2, 2014

You don’t say

“I think the good news is that Jack is somebody with a good sense of humor.”

– The Wichita Independent Business Association’s Tim Witsman, who says the group was not trying to make a comment on Jack DeBoer’s abilities as its annual meeting speaker by calling him Jack DeBore on invitations

Kernel’s Popcorn Express to expand to former PrintMaster space

WICHITA — Four years ago, Merrill Lynch financial adviser Tracy Mavis had a client who was retiring and wondered whether Mavis might know someone who would be interested in his Popcorn Express business.

“I told him … I did not know anyone,” Mavis says.

Turns out he did.

“I got to thinking about it … and decided to buy it myself,” Mavis says. “It’s something that seemed like a lot of fun to do.”

Mavis says his instincts were correct, and now he and some family members are expanding their Kernel’s Popcorn Express by moving to the former PrintMaster space at Second and Wabash.

“It gives us a better retail location (and) more visibility,” Mavis says.

He also likes that the 6,000-square-foot space is close to downtown.

“It just seems like there’s always events going on downtown.”

Currently, Kernel’s makes and sells 40 flavors of popcorn in 2,000 square feet at 224 N. Kansas, between First and Second.

Mavis says he needs more space to make, store and display his products.

“It was just time to expand and take it to the next level,” he says.

John Potochnik of Weichert Realtors Compass Point and Elyssa Seymour of NAI Martens handled the deal.

Mavis’ goal is to move the 27-year-old business by late July.

“It’s a lot of fun,” Mavis says of the business. “Everybody’s always happy when they come in there, and everybody leaves happy.”

OfficeMax on West Kellogg closing due to merger

WICHITA — Stores are starting to close following the merger of Office Depot and OfficeMax late last year.

The OfficeMax on West Kellogg will close on May 31.

“It’s due to the merger,” says supervisor Lynn Bradley.

She says 16 stores will close in the district that includes Kansas. California, Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, Texas, Utah and Las Vegas are also in that district.

“We’re not sure if there will be more to come or not,” Bradley says of more closures.

She’s not sure how the other OfficeMax and Office Depot stores in Wichita will be affected.

Bradley says everything in the West Kellogg store will be sold by the time it closes, and that includes displays.

“The only thing that will be left in the store will be the lights.”

Building committee meeting canceled, but not before DCF lease details get distributed

UPDATED — A meeting of the Joint Committee on State Building Construction was canceled at the last minute Tuesday, but not before a sheet detailing a Department for Children and Families move was distributed.

“This is appalling,” Rep. Jim Ward, D-Wichita and a committee member, says of the lease numbers he saw on the sheet.

Nine state agencies, including more than 700 employees, are leaving the city-owned Finney State Office Building. More than 550 of those employees are with the DCF.

In February, Have You Heard? reported that the DCF was close to signing a deal for space that the U.S. Postal Service is vacating at 2601 S. Oliver. A story last week detailed how the possible lease wasn’t as close to being finalized as some had thought.

“It’s our intention to move into the postal service building,” DCF spokeswoman Theresa Freed says. “The plan’s not finalized, so as I mentioned before, we can’t discuss the details of the pending contract.”

She does say, though, that the DCF is negotiating to remain in the Finney building an extra nine months after its lease expires at the end of September.

“We’ve been very appreciative of the cooperation between our staff and the city of Wichita to make that happen,” Freed says.

Ward is not appreciative of any part of the deal.

“They totally ignored the people of Wichita,” he says of the “number of voices from Wichita that said this move doesn’t make any sense.”

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