I’ll be out of the office until May 15. More scoop then!
I’ll be out of the office until May 15. More scoop then!
WICHITA — A policy change related to employee cafeteria discounts led to a minor Facebook dustup for Via Christi Health this week.
Employees no longer will receive discounts at any of Via Christi’s cafeterias.
“It’s a cost-savings measure,” says Judy Espinoza, chief human resource officer.
Also, she says there were a range of discounts depending on locations, and some sites didn’t have any.
“It was very inconsistent.”
After the change was announced, some employees took to Via Christi’s main Facebook page to complain.
“It was very obvious the employees did not know they were on the public page,” Espinoza says. “You could tell from the language.”
Also, she says some comments tagged employees who weren’t part of the conversation although they appeared to be.
“That kind of crosses the line,” Espinoza says.
“I’m not a Facebook savvy person,” she says, but if she were caught in a similar situation, “I’d just be mortified.”
She says Via Christi made the decision to remove the comments after one employee who was tagged expressed concern.
“Didn’t know the French were pogo stick illiterate.”
— An e-mail from Wichita producer Bob Walterscheid on a commercial he shot in the ’70s for a Chance Rides pogo stick that a French producer would like to use to help educate viewers on the history of pogo sticks
It’ll actually be a combination Dunkin’ Donuts and Hardee’s restaurant. Four of the six service stations along the turnpike are undergoing changes.
“The contract was up,” says Lisa Callahan, the Kansas Turnpike Authority’s director of public relations.
There was a new bidding process, which is what’s leading to the changes.
The Towanda service station also is converting from a McDonald’s to a combination Hardee’s and Dunkin Donuts.
The McDonald’s restaurants at the Lawrence and Belle Plaine service stations were the successful bidders and will remain in those stations.
Some fuel operating partners are changing, though.
Like the previous contracts, the new ones are for 10 years.
Callahan says KTA owns the land and buildings for the stations, but its business partners operate them.
WICHITA — The latest round of musical chairs — business style — is almost over at Bradley Fair.
Cooper’s impending move has been one of the worst-kept recent retail secrets, but now that it’s happening, she’s eager to talk.
“I am so thankful that George Laham has given me this opportunity,” she says of the center’s developer.
“I probably wouldn’t have stepped out on my own and done it,” Cooper says. “It just makes it so much more convenient for our customers to visit.”
Her new space will be 4,000 square feet, which is about 20 percent more than what she has now.
“So we can grow and be a better store and offer new lines and offer more of some lines that we have,” Cooper says.
College Hill Cleaners also is moving. It’s taking 1,300 square feet where Origins used to be and will have a new after-hours box for customers to drop off items needing cleaning.
“I jokingly tell people it takes a staff of 3 over four weeks to plant and pull up the bulbs and it only takes 15 minutes to give them all away.”
— An e-mail from the Garvey Center’s Larry Weber on the center’s “Great Annual Tulip Give Away” of more than 15,000 tulip bulbs to tenants
In August, sources said Costco was interested in the northeast corner of Kellogg and Webb Road, which was Hawker Beechcraft property.
When the aircraft company changed its name to simply Beechcraft earlier this year and changed all its signs, spokeswoman Nicole Alexander said it didn’t put one back up on the corner since the property is for sale.
No one with Beechcraft or Costco is talking yet, but here’s the latest on the potential deal:
Costco has about 17 1/2 acres under contract. The deal isn’t likely to close until later this year. That’s substantially further out than initial timelines suggested. It looks like part of the holdup was the Hawker bankruptcy filing. There were some questions related to environmental issues at the plant as well.
WICHITA — Midwest Hearing Aids owner Terry Brewster is on the move again by partnering on two new locations with ophthalmologists.
“We’re trying to really put ears and eyes together,” he says. “It’s all about co-branding.”
Brewster says years ago it used to be that optical shops also sold hearing aids because people who needed hearing aids often needed glasses, too.
“Everything comes back full circle,” he says.
Brewster is moving his Newton shop to 1715 Medical Parkway in the same area that William Beck has his ophthalmology clinic.
“We have worked very hard, but we finally got a lease,” he says. “We’ve been working on Newton forever. . . . We’re real close to moving in.”
Brewster also is moving his office at 21st and Woodlawn to the Grene Vision Group office at 1851 N. Webb Road.
“It’s where the main Grene Vision Group offices are at,” he says. “I’m going to try to co-brand with Dr. (Mark) Wellemeyer.”
Wellemeyer says that the patient demographic for both groups is similar so there are benefits for both.
Brewster expects to make that move in early July.
There are 37 Midwest Hearing Aids sites in Kansas, and Brewster says two more are in the works. Look for news on those in the coming months.
WICHITA — The Casual Male XL store at Eastgate Plaza is going to undergo an expansion and rebranding in the coming months.
The move is part of a national expansion for the Massachusetts-based Destination XL Group.
The company’s new stores, including the one in Wichita, will be called Destination XL. They’ll offer expanded sizes and brands — more than 100 in all — along with wider aisles and bigger dressing rooms.
Currently, the Eastgate Casual Male is in about 3,500 square feet at the east end of the center in a free-standing building. It will expand to about 7,000 square feet. While renovation is under way, the shop will temporarily move to between Kirkland’s and Dress Barn within Eastgate.
Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos. helped with the deal.
The new store should be ready in early 2014.
“They’re just working through some of the details and getting ready for the season.”
© 2013 Wichita Eagle & Beacon Publishing Co. All rights reserved.