Category Archives: Delano

Blue Swallowtail Studio soon to be without a home again

WICHITA — JoAn McGregor is once again looking for new space for her Blue Swallowtail Studio in Delano.

In July a year ago, McGregor explained that she was “really in a pickle” when she lost her lease at 1712 W. Douglas.

McGregor, who is a fused glass artist, potter and minister, then found new space at 1528 W. Douglas the next month.

Now, she says, “I’ve lost my lease again.”

McGregor says her rent is going up by 50 percent. She says there were some other issues as well, so she never stopped looking for other new space.

Her last day in business at her current space will be Aug. 23.

McGregor says she may try to set up in her garage or somewhere else if she doesn’t have a new space to move into by then.

She says that rent “prices are horribly high.”

“I’m really looking hard.”

Ganesh Yoga Studio to move to Delano

WICHITA — Christince Vumai is branching out on her own and moving her Ganesh Yoga Studio from the Nurture Wellness Center in College Hill to new space in Delano.

“I was starting small to kind of get a feel of it,” Vumai says of opening within Nurture Wellness Center in April.

She’s now in the process of moving to 1201 W. Douglas, which is just off the southwest corner of Douglas and Seneca across from QuikTrip.

The space is just over 700 square feet.

“I don’t want anything huge,” Vumai says.

“I want to keep classes small and intimate,” she says. “I want it to be very accessible and not intimidating.”

Vumai, who offers standard yoga for all levels, plans to reopen Aug. 2.

She says she named her business after the Hindu god Ganesh. Vumai says she especially likes his elephant symbolism.

“The elephant symbolism is very welcoming and nonintimidating.”

MakeICT will remain in Delano for now

WICHITA — When Bluebird Arthouse closed in late May, MakeICT had to scramble a bit to make sure it would still have a place to operate.

The group had been subleasing space at Bluebird, which was on West Douglas just east of Seneca in Delano.

Now, with help from the Knight Foundation Fund of the Wichita Community Foundation, MakeICT has a new lease at the address along with money to help pay for it and utilities for six months.

MakeICT formed in 2012 as part of the international Makerspace movement and recently was granted a nonprofit status.

“It’s this very cool thing that sometimes I think I’m too old to understand, but I’m trying,” says Shelly Prichard, president and CEO of the Wichita Community Foundation.

“It’s very loosely defined,” she says, “… which is part of what my personality has trouble with.”

Makerspaces are types of community centers that also have tools to help with all kinds of creativity.

That could be a wood shop, machine shop, art studio or science lab. Currently, MakeICt members can share a 3D printer, a foam cutting machine, PCs, CNC machines and other equipment and tools.

“It’s mostly about creation, whatever that looks like,” Prichard says. It’s things that aren’t necessarily connected … except by the idea of creation and community.”

Though she teases that she may be too old for it, Prichard says MakeICT actually is for people of all ages, backgrounds and interests.

“It’s not just a technology focus. It’s also the idea of community and coming together.”

Prichard says the idea of people with common interests coming together in a community to make things might be something people see on TV, “but it’s here in Wichita, and it’s happening.”

Along with help for rent and utilities, MakeICt also received money for new equipment and will have help for future planning and development.

“The part I’m excited about is the creation of a business plan,” Prichard says, “… just for sustainability so that they can grow and figure out a way to continue having this impact.”

She says the idea is for a business model to support the nonprofit idea.

Prichard says the goal is to get MakeICT a little closer to downtown, but she’s not sure where it may wind up after its lease in Delano expires.

“Hopefully that’s what the business plan will determine.”

Al’s Old & New Book Store to be first tenant at Block One retail center

booksWICHITA — The new retail center attached to the parking garage at Block One has its first tenant, and it may be an unexpected one.

Anita Siemer is going to move her Al’s Old & New Book Store from Delano, where it’s been for almost six decades, to the new downtown development.

Slawson Cos. is handling leasing at the 8,400-square-foot center. Slawson broker Jerry Jones says if he could create a list of what he wants at the center, he’d “put a book store right at the top of it.”

“We just feel really good about it,” he says.

So does Siemer, even though she never wanted to move.

The New Covenant United Methodist Church purchased Siemer’s space along with another space next door – at 1710 and 1712 W. Douglas – in order to expand. In April, Siemer expressed concerns about having to move due to cost.

“I can find cheap, crummy spaces in … parts of town that would be scary for after dark, and I can find expensive, nice places here in Delano and downtown, but you know, having to pay so much – like three times as much as I currently pay – I don’t think that’s really looking like it works for me right now,” she said at the time.

Now, she says Slawson Cos. has “gotten creative to make it so I could come into the space really in better shape than anything I found in Delano.”

Read More »

Big B’s Beef expands catering, changes hours

WICHITA — The “more convenient, centralized location” that Liz Bathgate said she was looking for when she moved her Big B’s Beef to Delano seems to be working out.

“It’s been great here,” she says. “We have wonderful neighbors.”

Bathgate and her husband, Brian, moved their restaurant from 4628 S. Seneca to 605 W. Douglas, next to Hatman Jack’s Wichita Hat Works, late last year.

Liz Bathgate says they’ve found Big B’s is more of a lunch destination in its new spot, so they’re changing its hours.

Monday through Wednesday, the restaurant will still be open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. On Thursday through Saturday, hours will be 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

“At 7 o’clock, it seems to slow down here in Delano,” Bathgate says.

With the new site, Big B’s now has catering, too.

“We’re just expanding our catering menu,” Bathgate says. “This is growing. More and more people are asking for it.”

The restaurant also is now delivering downtown. There’s not a set minimum order.

“We usually ask that it’s a few orders,” Bathgate says. “We’re not real picky on that.”

Jon Suddeth to buy Delano Barbeque Co.

WICHITA — Ben E. Keith district sales rep Jon Suddeth was visiting an account, Delano Barbeque Co., when he learned owners Scott and Teri Webb wanted to sell the business.

“I said, “I may know somebody who would be interested,’” says Suddeth, who was thinking of another account of his.

“At the time, I didn’t think it would be me.”

It now is, though. Suddeth and his wife, Michelle, are taking over the restaurant at 710 W. Douglas on June 30.

“I swore I would never do it again,” Jon Suddeth says of getting back in the restaurant business.

He’s previously managed restaurants such as Heroes and Gobi Grille. This is the first time he’ll own a restaurant.

So why does he want back in?

“I’m an idiot.”

Suddeth says he’s keeping his day job, too.

“I’m not leaving Ben E. Keith,” he says. “I do want to make it perfectly clear.”

Michelle Suddeth is going to run the restaurant.

Jon Suddeth says he enjoys selling food to restaurants in addition to diners.

“Essentially, I’m picking up a new account, and it’s mine.”

Read More »

Antique Gallery in Delano to open in former Delano Antique Mall

UPDATED — A new antique mall is opening in the former Delano Antique Mall, which closed late last year, at 1642 W. Douglas. That’s about six blocks west of Seneca.

“It’s going to be a little more upscale than before,” Lee Tippen says of the new Antique Gallery in Delano.

Tippen previously co-owned Paradise Antiques, which he says he closed when he sold the property.

At 13,000 square feet, the Delano space is three times the size Paradise was.

“We’ve totally rehabbed it,” Tippen says. “I think we’ve put about 55 gallons of paint inside.”

So far, he says he has about 60 percent of the space filled with new vendors.

Read More »

You don’t say

“I wish love paid the bills, we’d be open forever.”

Emily Brookover in a press release announcing that she will be closing her 3-year-old Bluebird Arthouse in Delano

Poe & Associates to move to Phil Ruffin’s Delano building near Douglas and McLean

WICHITA — Phil Ruffin has landed a new tenant for the same building where the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services moved in Delano.

That’s the former Davis Furniture building to the west of Douglas and McLean.

Consulting engineering firm Poe & Associates is taking 4,000 square feet in the building.

“That fills up that building,” Ruffin says. “We’re happy to have them. Very nice firm.”

Brad Saville of Landmark Commercial Real Estate and Grant Tidemann of J.P. Weigand & Sons handled the deal.

Ruffin also owns the vacant space on the corner, which is about a one acre lot. He also has space behind the Immigration building.

“We have quite a bit of acreage there.”

Ruffin says most likely he’ll build to suit for someone.

“We’re taking our time with it,” he says. “Our first choice was to fill that current building.”

Ruffin says he spent several million dollars refurbishing it.

“It’s a beautiful space now.”

He expects the corner property won’t be an issue to fill.

“That area seems to be kind of hot now.”

New Covenant United Methodist Church purchases Delano buildings

WICHITA — New Covenant United Methodist Church is going to expand in Delano, but not until Al’s Old & New Book Store owner Anita Siemer finds new space for her store.

1710, foreground and 1712 and 1718 W. Douglas. (April 30, 2014)“The move is going to hinge on Anita at the bookstore,” says Cathy Holley, who is pastor of the decade-old church. “We’re going to wait it out until she finds the right place to be.”

The church has purchased the 5,000-square-foot building that’s home to Al’s and Signlab.net at 1710 and 1712 W. Douglas. It also bought the 3,000-square-foot storefront where it currently meets at 1718 W. Douglas.

“We’re doing this because we do want to stay connected in the Delano community,” Holley says. “The community is very important to us.”

Holley says the church needs a larger worship space and the ability to serve more members.

“Right now we just don’t have room to grow,” she says. “The configuration of the building we’re in now doesn’t allow us to do any renovations.”

Read More »