Nectar of the Gods Vape Shop to open in Sweetbriar at 21st and Amidon

WICHITA — Before he decided to open his own electronic cigarette shop, David Ford tried to count how many there already are in Wichita.

It’s hard to come up with an exact figure, but suffice it to say there are a lot.

That didn’t deter Ford, though, who is opening Nectar of the Gods Vape Shop in the Sweetbriar shopping center on the northwest corner of 21st and Amidon.

“There’s two hookah lounges right there … but there’s no vape shops in any kind of proximity to that area,” Ford says. “That’s the whole reason I went there.”

The store will open in early September. Ford may open more shops after that.

“I would like to,” he says. “We’ll see how it works out.”

Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos. handled the deal.

Ford says the juices that people can vape come in all sorts of flavors, such as a New York cheesecake that offers all of the flavor “without all the … guilt of the calories you’re putting on.”

“It’s basically nectar,” he says of the juices.

He says nectar of the gods is fabled to have lifesaving powers.

“If you get people off of smoking, they can live a little longer,” Ford says. “That’s the whole point behind Nectar of the Gods.”

Connie Hamilton sells Connie’s Cookies, which is moving east and changing to Connie’s Cookies Bakery Cafe

WICHITA — Twenty four years after opening Connie’s Cookies, Connie Hamilton has sold the business, but she’s not leaving.

That’s because she’s sold it to her son, Rob Smith, and his wife, Tanya.

“Everybody asks me if I’m really sad about that, and I’m not,” Hamilton says. “I get to go back to doing what I like.”

That’s making cookies instead of handling paperwork.

“I’m still going to be every bit as present as I’ve ever been.”

Except that won’t be in the Sweetbriar shopping center at 21st and Amidon.

The Smiths and Hamilton decided to move the shop to Reed’s Cove Plaza on East 21st Street just east of 127th Street where Knolla’s Pizza used to be.

“We have no visibility over here, and things have changed,” Hamilton says of the current location. “When we first moved in here, we didn’t need visibility.”

Though holiday sales still are strong, Hamilton says the rest of the year has become more of a challenge.

“Nowadays, everybody is opening a bakery,” she says. She says many bakers operate out of their homes.

“It has really, really eaten into our everyday sales,” she says. “We had to look at what’s wrong, and we decided what was wrong was where we were located.”

She and the Smiths initially only considered moving downtown or to Delano.

“We had every intention of staying central,” Hamilton says.

Then Craig Simon of Landmark Commercial Real Estate, who handled the deal for the Reed’s Cove space, suggested that center.

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Connie’s Cookies to go international with a new company

WICHITA — For years, Connie Hamilton dreamed of doing something big with her Connie’s Cookies.

She moved her business to Sweetbriar at 21st and Amidon. She doubled her space there. And she entered into a licensed agreement for two women to open a Connie’s Cookie’s in Kansas City, Kan.

But she still wanted bigger.

With customers like Tom Devlin and Gayla Carney, Hamilton has always known “I have resources I probably could have called upon.”

“I just never felt confident enough to do that.”

Instead, Arthur Kerr, chief executive of Kerr Enterprises in New York, came to her. And with his help Hamilton took what she calls a “big and scary” move to form Connie’s Cookies International and take sales worldwide.

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