Category Archives: Wellington

Oliver’s Little Italy to reopen as Rocco’s Little Italy in Wellington

WICHITA — In April, Oliver’s Little Italy owner Scott Cosentino said he was closing his south-side restaurant and that he may reopen in another market.

Now, he’s doing it.

Rocco’s Little Italy, which Cosentino named after his father’s middle name, will open in Wellington in about a month.

“I’m going to have the same menu,” Cosentino says of the Italian food he’ll serve.

Cosentino says though his food was very well received in Wichita, nothing much else seemed to work about his restaurant at 1930 S. Oliver.

He says he chose to open in Wellington because he has a couple of backers from the area.

Rocco’s, which Cosentino says will be “right downtown Wellington” at 107 W. Harvey in the former Linda’s Lunch Box space, will be open for lunch and dinner every day but Tuesday most likely. On Sundays, dinner will be served from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Cosentino hopes to open with at least a beer license.

He says he thinks he’ll see some of his former Wichita customers at Rocco’s.

“Some of them said they’ll come down there.”

‘What is wheat, Alex?’ Wellington makes ‘Jeopardy’

WICHITA — Shelley Hansel turned on her phone Friday shortly after her plane touched down with the intent of calling a friend for a ride.

Instead, the executive director of the Wellington Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau was met with insistent dings of messages alerting her to big news for her city.

“Wellington was one of the questions on ‘Jeopardy,’” Hansel says of Friday’s show. “It was so hilarious.”

The statement was: “The amber rolling fields of Wellington, Kansas make it this grain ‘capital of the world.’”

“That would be, ‘What is wheat, Alex?’” Hansel says.

She says she’s thrilled that her hometown was chosen for a question.

“You know you’ve made it.”

However, Hansel says, “What’s interesting is that’s actually somewhat incorrect.”

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Japanese couple hope to model their Depression glass museum on Wellington’s NDGA National Glass Museum

WICHITA — What once was a hobby while they lived in Kansas has turned into something of a business pursuit for Tak and Aya Oda in their home country of Japan.

The Odas were in Wellington Thursday to tour and learn about the NDGA National Glass Museum in order to start their own museum in conjunction with an American-style restaurant they have in Komoro City, Japan. NDGA is the National Depression Glass Association.

“Ah, we are lucky coming here,” Aya Oda says she and her husband commented while driving from Kansas City to Wellington.

They flew more than a dozen hours to get to America.

“It’s just nothing to see this view,” Aya Oda says of Washington Avenue in downtown Wellington where the museum is.

The Odas lived in the United States for about 25 years, a decade of which was in Kansas when Tak Oda was president of Sokkia, a company that makes measurement instruments and at the time was in Overland Park.

While living in Kansas and Nebraska, they began frequenting antique malls for Depression glass, the sometimes clear and often colorful glass that businesses gave away or sold cheaply to attract shoppers during the Depression.

After Tak Oda retired, they returned home, though someone was living in their Tokyo house, so they bought a large home in the historic Komoro City.

“The house is so big, so we decided to do something,” Tak Oda says of opening the restaurant in their home.

“Doing nothing is very tiresome,” Aya Oda says.

The Odas have more than 300 pieces of Depression glass and began using it in their increasingly popular restaurant, Sun Hills Oda.

“We never thought about opening (a) museum at first,” Aya Oda says.

As she cooks, Tak Oda serves the food and often spends his time talking about Depression glass with guests.

“I want all Japanese people (to) see these pretty, historical glasses,” Aya Oda says.

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You don’t say

“I guess I better dust off the cheerleading outfit.”

Shelley Hansel Williams, who has returned to her old job (which she left a year ago) as executive director of the Wellington Area Chamber of Commerce and CVB