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.”

MGM Studio of the Dance to move to Central and Woodlawn area

WICHITA — After more than a quarter century at Douglas and Hillside, MGM Studio of the Dance is moving.

New owner Christy Lee has signed a deal for 4,000 square feet at Plaza Del Sol at 435 N. Woodlawn near Central and Woodlawn.

“We really, really wanted to stay centrally located,” Lee says.

She says a lot of her students come from the College Hill area but some come from surrounding communities as well.

Lee has worked the desk at MGM for the last five years. She purchased the business this month. Former owner Mary Mayta died in February.

“Miss Mary has quite the history,” Lee says. “She was quite the icon. Quite the staple here in Wichita.”

Lee’s daughter, 13-year-old Tori Holt, has danced at MGM since she was 5. She is Lee’s inspiration for buying the business.

“I live vicariously through my daughter,” Lee says. “When I was younger, I wanted to be a ‘Solid Gold‘ dancer. That was my dream. Always wanted to be on Broadway.”

Lee is a hairdresser and massage therapist. The two spaces she’s moving into were formerly home to a salon and massage therapy group.

“It was like a sign went off,” she says. “It was like, ‘Ding, ding, ding, ding. Here it is.’”

Jeff Greenberg of CMG Properties handled the deal.

Lee says her goal had been to be in the new space by the middle of August when fall classes start, but the transition with the business has taken longer than she planned. Now she hopes to move by September.

MGM is in two studios now.

Studio 1, which is where MGM started, is on same side of Douglas as the Crown Uptown Theatre.

Then, 15 years ago, Mayta opened a second studio across from Crown Uptown.

“Studio 1 is old and kind of run down,” Lee says. “It’s a great location, but it needs a lot of work.”

That studio will close by the end of June.

Lee has already made some other changes.

MGM offers all kinds of dance classes, such as tap, ballet, jazz, hip hop and tumbling for all ages. Lee has added themed dance camps. For instance, she had a princess dance camp “that was a huge success.”

Lee also has a parents night out on some Saturdays so parents can drop off their kids and have a few hours to themselves.

She’s also created a website along with Facebook and Instagram accounts, which Mayta never had.

“When she passed, she was 81,” Lee says. “She kept everything kind of old school.”

Though Lee is carrying on a tradition and adding her own touches to it, she says it’s a position she did not expect to be in.

“I’ve always wanted to own my own business. Never dreamed it would be a dance studio.”

Read More »

Urbandale, Iowa, names trail for Bob Layton

WICHITA — Before he left his position as city manager of Urbandale, Iowa, to take that role in Wichita, Bob Layton learned the city planned to honor him by naming a trail after him.

The irony, not to mention “the funny part of the story,” he says, is that he cut that project out of a capital improvement program right before he left.

So instead, he says, city officials said “that they’re going to name this trail some day in the future after me.”

Saturday is that day.

Layton, an avid runner, will attend the dedication of the one-mile trail through a park.

“We felt it was appropriate to name the trail after him because it represents one of his passions and because he himself helped to develop the master plan for this park,” Urbandale Parks and Recreation Director Jan Herke told the Des Moines Register.

These days, one of Layton’s favorite running areas is through College Hill, where he often runs with friends.

So is that where he might like something named for him one day? Has he given it any thought?

“Probably some on-street bike trail or something, I don’t know,” Layton says.

He does know, though, that he’d prefer for it not to be anytime soon.

Why not?

“To have something named after you in Wichita, you would need to be deceased.”

Shelia Jean’s to open in College Hill

WICHITA — Shelia Ford became a nurse to help her family, and now she’s leaving the profession – at least for now – to also help her family.

Ford worked as a nurse for two years, but now her husband Jason Ford’s business, Advanced Lock & Key, is doing well enough that he’s encouraging her to pursue her dream of owning her own store.

“He’s always been encouraging,” Ford says. “I always wanted to have my own boutique.”

Thursday, she opens Shelia Jean’s on East Douglas a couple of doors to the west of Harry’s Uptown.

Sheila Jean is Ford’s full name.

“That’s what my grandmother used to call me,” she says.

The store will sell women’s accessories and apparel in all sizes and price points.

“That was kind of the goal of the store … just to have a little bit of everything,” Ford says. “’We would like to expand and have a gift line maybe next year.”

Read More »

Picasso’s Pizzeria to open in Derby

WICHITA — Picasso’s Pizzeria owner Kurt Schmidt is going to open a second restaurant, but it’s not where he initially thought it would be.

“I’m still waiting on my favorite space on the east side to become available,” Schmidt says of Central and Vassar in College Hill.

While he’s waiting, Schmidt is going to open a Picasso’s in Bristol Square at Madison and Rock Road in Derby.

“Derby is just crazy right now with all the restaurants on Rock Road,” he says.

Bristol Square is where the state this fall is opening a new driver’s license bureau, which will be a couple of doors down from where Picasso’s will open in February.

The restaurant will be similar to Schmidt’s first Picasso’s, which opened in Delano last year.

The new Picasso’s will be in 2,000 square feet, which compares to 1,800 square feet in Delano. Schmidt hopes to have a few tables outdoors in front of the restaurant along with an indoor-outdoor patio in another area.

Read More »

Cero’s Candies ready to open in College Hill

WICHITA — Memorial Day has come and gone, and Cero’s Candies did not open in its new location as planned.

The Fourth of July came and went, too, with the store still in its downtown space, but the same won’t be true with Labor Day.

That’s because Pam Bishop says the new shop is opening at Happiness Plaza on East Douglas in College Hill on Wednesday.

“We’re finally getting to move,” she says.

Red tape related to approvals on the new site held things up, she says.

Read More »

Platinum Salon Spa & Boutique and Salon Bella to merge on west side; Color Bar Salon to open in Clifton Square

WICHITA — There’s news with a few salons and stylists in the greater Wichita area.

First, Platinum Salon Spa & Boutique and Salon Bella are merging.

Susan Wardle and Tammy Kudlock are moving their Salon Bella from 119th and Maple to Tambra Hiser’s Platinum Salon at the northeast corner of 13th and Maize Road on Tuesday.

“I wanted to grow, and I don’t want to do it … one by one where it takes months,” Hiser says. “I came up with this innovative idea.”

She actively sought other salon partners by cold calling a few.

“Basically I decided to knock on some doors,” Hiser says. “I wanted to see what salon owners were faced with, some challenges.”

She and Wardle and Kudlock thought they would be a good fit and be able to offer complementary services. Hiser says they decided, “Wouldn’t it be genius to mix these two staffs together?”

She says education is a big focus for both salons.

There will be 11 stylists who will share nine stations.

In addition to hair services, there will be facials, nail care, massage and body wraps among other things.

Hiser says the trend lately has been for stylists to branch out on their own, but she says she and Wardle and Kudlock see benefits to combining their services in one place and under the Platinum name.

“Adding two heads is better than one,” Hiser says. It’s “going to be incredible.”

Read More »

First Wichita Freebirds World Burritos to open near Central and Hillside

WICHITA — Almost a year after announcing they wanted to come to Wichita, the first Freebirds World Burrito franchisees will be opening here.

Overland Park-based FB Midwest Development is the first franchisee of the chain, which is based in Texas and California, and plans to develop Freebirds sites in Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska.

The first Wichita Freebirds will be just south of Central and Hillside in the same center as Great Wall.

“We like the area; traffic counts are good,” says Bryce Katz, COO and partner.

“Everybody said College Hill was a good little center.”

He says he and his partners especially like that Wesley Medical Center is at the intersection.

“That was obviously a huge draw for us.”

In July, Have You Heard? first reported that the group wanted to bring three Freebirds restaurants here.

The first one should open by the middle of June with seating for about 100, including a patio.

Katz says the restaurant is similar to Chipotle Mexican Grill and has a big focus on organic items such as grass-fed beef and hormone-free chicken.

Freebirds has what Katz calls “very, very fresh” burritos, burrito bowls, nachos, quesadillas, salad and seven kinds of salsa.

After the first Freebirds opens, look for a second possible announcement in the 21st and Greenwich area.

Cero’s Candies to leave downtown for a less sunny spot in College Hill

Cero’s Candies owners Pam (left) and Darcy Bishop in front of the future College Hill home of the business.

WICHITA — Ed Cero has been gone from his family’s Cero’s Candies for more than a decade, but his advice lives on.

“Ed Cero had actually written little notes,” says Pam Bishop, who has owned the business with her daughter, Darcy, for two years.

They inherited the notes that Cero left for the previous owner.

“One of his notes was, ‘Never put a candy shop on the north side of the street,’” Pam Bishop says.

The Bishops agree – too much of their chocolate is melting due to the winter sun – and are moving the store from the north side of Douglas downtown to the south side of Douglas at Happiness Plaza in College Hill.

“We’re constantly shifting candy around,” Pam Bishop says.

“The sun beats in and melts the chocolate no matter how cold we keep the room,” Darcy Bishop says.

Instead of holding chocolate right now, one of the store’s cases instead has a big sugar Easter egg Ed Cero made in 1982.

The business, which opened in 1885, has been at a variety of addresses mostly along Douglas on the north and south sides.

Pam Bishop says the store’s current space is a little big for its needs.

Cero’s will move from 2,800 square feet at 1108 E. Douglas to 1,600 square feet at 3429 E. Douglas most likely on Memorial Day weekend.

“It’s got more usable space than we have now,” Darcy Bishop says of the new space.

For instance, a dessert cafe the Bishops tried in a side room at the current space didn’t work out.

“It was a little awkward, so we stopped doing it,” Pam Bishop says.

At the new space, which is a former house where the Bag Ladies used to be, there will be room in the front of the store for tables and chairs. There also will be WiFi.

The Bishops added ice cream sales in summer months after they bought the store. With the move into the College Hill neighborhood, Pam Bishop expects those sales to do better.

“That’s going to be a bigger draw there than it is here.”

Read More »

Reverie Coffee Roasters to open near College Hill in April

WICHITA — There soon will be a new business to toast along Douglas Avenue not far from College Hill.

Reverie Coffee Roasters is opening at 2611 E. Douglas, which is a couple of blocks east of Grove, in April.

“Our entire retail space … is going to be dedicated to teaching people about the process from when it leaves the farm to when it gets to your cup,” says Andrew Gough, who is opening the business with Rebecca McNelly.

“There’s a huge market for it here,” McNelly says of coffee and everything associated with it.

“We’re focusing on artisan gourmet coffee,” she says.

Gough says it will be fair trade, single-origin coffee that shoppers can trace back to which farmer grew it and even on what plot of land.

“It’s just like wine,” he says.

Gough says the emphasis will be on quality and freshness.

“Everything you buy is going to be freshly roasted, generally within a day or so of when you purchase (it),” he says. “One of the unique things that we’re going to be doing is we are going … to be allowing people to try to create their own blend of coffee.”

He says Reverie will keep customers’ coffee blends on file.

“We’ll help people create their own profiles if they want it,” he says. “We’re going to encourage people to play with the blends a little bit.”

Read More »