Tutoring Center to open at Village at Greenwich

WICHITA — Sachin Bharati’s two small children aren’t old enough for school and test-taking yet, but he’s already thinking of their future and starting a Tutoring Center franchise here.

The business, which is part of a California-based chain, will open this summer next to Supercuts in 1,400 square feet at the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich.

“I was just really intrigued by the program,” Bharati says.

The franchise offers an after-school education center for children from kindergarten through 12th grade and specializes in reading, math and writing.

“It’s all one-to-one individual instruction for children,” Bharati says.

The franchise also has SAT and ACT prep classes, which Bharati won’t have immediately “but hopefully down the line.”

“That was a really strong factor, too,” he says of his interest in the franchise.

Initially, Bharati will have two to four instructors.

“It depends on the demand after that.”

Bharati is the business manager for his father Ralph Bharati’s psychiatry office, which he’ll continue to do in addition to having the Tutoring Center.

“Basically,” he says, “I wanted to bring something to the community here for the children.”

Freebirds World Burrito set to open at Village at Greenwich

WICHITA — In September, Have You Heard? reported that Wichita’s second Freebirds World Burrito would open at the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich. Next week, it will happen.

This makes the seventh restaurant for Overland Park-based Freebirds franchisee FB Midwest Development. Its first Wichita Freebirds opened in June just south of Central on Hillside.

Last fall, Freebirds regional manager Steve Perkins said business has been “fantastic.”

“Couldn’t be happier,” he said.

Perkins said the chain is “just putting feelers out and looking” around the city for other sites. He expects there to be three or four, including one on the west side and one in south Wichita toward Derby.

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.

The first 25 diners at the new Freebirds next Thursday will receive free burritos for one year.


Lawrence Freebirds World Burrito closes, but Wichita Freebirds is doing fine

WICHITA — The Freebirds World Burrito in Lawrence has closed after a year in business, but that doesn’t mean anything for Wichita Freebirds restaurants, one of the chain’s operators says.

“Everything’s great there,” says Bryce Katz, COO and partner in Overland Park-based FB Midwest Development, which is the first franchisee of the chain that’s based in Texas and California

“We never had a following in Lawrence, unfortunately,” Katz says. “Being a graduate of Kansas, it’s very disappointing.”

He says when the restaurant first opened on Massachusetts Street in late January last year, there was a great reception in the community. Then came a couple of big snowstorms followed by spring break.

“It just killed our momentum,” Katz says.

He’s not sure why.

“If I knew it would probably have helped us not to close.”

The first Wichita Freebirds opened in in June south of Central and Hillside in the same center as Great Wall.

“It’s the best in our system actually,” Katz says of the chain’s six restaurants.

“Wichita people have taken well to it,” he says. “We’re working on getting that service piece going faster and getting people through the line and operationally getting more sound.”

Katz says the rest of his company’s restaurants “are doing great.”

Another one is planned for the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich.

Katz says a west-side Freebirds is a possibility as well. He says there’s “room for expansion.”

“We’re definitely open to look.”

You don’t say

“Believe me, I’m just sick about this not happening.”

Daylight Donuts franchisee Diane Hall, who for a variety of reasons has put plans on hold for a Sugar Shak Too at the Village at Greenwich

The Sugar Shak Too, a Daylight Donuts franchise, to open at Village at Greenwich

WICHITA — Daylight Donuts franchisees Diane and Mike Hall, who own the Sugar Shak near 21st and Tyler, have surprised their children and decided to open a second doughnut shop.

According to their children, the Halls have been talking about doing a second shop “every day for the past six years,” Diane Hall says.

So when Mike Hall came home one day and said, “I’ve got it. I’ve got the location,” Diane Hall says her skeptical children didn’t believe it.

“My kids just kind of rolled their eyes like, ‘Yeah, OK.’”

It’s true, though. The Halls are opening the Sugar Shak Too, which will say Daylight Donuts out front, at the newest strip center at the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich.

“The demand over here is actually very high,” Diane Hall says. She says when east-siders hear she owns the west-side doughnut shop, they always say they wish she’d come east, too.

“We’re kind of going on that,” Diane Hall says. “Just kind of a hunch.”

Landmark Commercial Real Estate broker Craig Simon, who handled the deal, also told the Halls he thinks the growing area will be great for their business.

The 1,400-square-foot space, which is slightly larger than the west-side Sugar Shak’s space, will have a drive-through. Hall says that “is going to be a plus.”

The business will be on the opposite end cap of PostNet, which recently moved from around the corner and now has a drive-through of its own.

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Freebirds World Burrito to open at Village at Greenwich; PostNet to move

WICHITA — Freebirds World Burrito has signed a lease to open its second Wichita restaurant at the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich.

This is causing PostNet to have to move, though that’s not a bad thing, the owners say.

“It’s a great expansion for us,” says Liz Anderson, who owns PostNet with her husband, Jim.

“It’s going to give us great visibility on a high-traffic road,” she says of facing 21st Street.

Anderson says business people will be able to see PostNet along that street, while the restaurant will face Greenwich – and thus K-96 – which could help it.

With 1,400 square feet, the store will have about the same amount of room in its new space in a new part of the center around the corner from where it is now. It also will have a pick-up window for the first time.

“It’s going to be a great thing for us,” Anderson says of customers being able to drop off and pick up orders without leaving their cars.

She says Freebirds wanted her space because of her patio. The restaurant also is taking the space next to PostNet’s current store for a total of about 2,500 square feet.

PostNet will close on Saturday but be back open Monday following a quick move.

“It’s just been crazy,” Anderson says.

Freebirds will open in October or November.

The chain’s first Wichita restaurant opened in June just south of Central on Hillside.

Regional manager Steve Perkins says business has been “fantastic.”

“Couldn’t be happier,” he says.

Perkins says the chain is “just putting feelers out and looking” around the city for other sites. He expects there to be three or four, including one on the west side and one in south Wichita toward Derby.

Anderson says her business is doing well also.

“We’re excited to be a Wichita business growing.”

She says she appreciates that local businesses do business with her store.

“I tend to keep everything local, too,” Anderson says. “It’s important for our community.”

New retail center under construction at Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich

WICHITA — With the existing 21,000-square-foot retail center fully leased at the Village at Greenwich, a new one is now under construction.

“We need more space,” says Steve Wheeler, one of the developers of the northeast corner of 21st and Greenwich.

The new 10,000-square-foot retail center is along 21st Street just west of Community Bank. The other center is along Greenwich.

“We’re feeling pretty optimistic about the area,” Wheeler says. “We’re excited about the STAR bonds and the athletic center coming in, and we’re trying to stay in front of it and make sure we have space available when people want to be up there.”

He has a dozen more acres to develop there.

In addition to the retail centers, there’s also a Staybridge Suites there and a Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites under construction.

Wheeler says he’s “kind of pleased with the whole outlook on Greenwich right now.”

That wasn’t always the case.

“Things were moving along nice, and then in ’08 and ’09 things really slowed down,” he says. “It seems to be picking back up again.”

West-side GoRun Wichita to expand

WICHITA — Kevin Swinicki and Randy Mijares are expanding their west-side GoRun Wichita at 2556 N. Maize Road less than two years after opening it.

“The store’s busier, and we just need a little more room for shoe fitting and apparel,” Swinicki says. “We’ll be basically almost doubling it.”

The store currently is in 1,400 square feet and is expanding into the former Game X Change space for a total of about 2,500 square feet.

The expansion isn’t necessarily to carry more lines, although GoRun has recently added Asics to its brands.

“We’re always constantly looking at new things to bring in,” Swinicki says.

A 2,800-square-foot east-side GoRun opened last year at the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich. Swinicki says both stores are doing well.

“We just kind of see the health-and-fitness boom kind of coming about again,” Swinicki says. “The running community continues to grow.”

GoRun offers a couple of major training opportunities a year that culminate in a race.

“We do help with a lot of races,” Swinicki says.

He says he and Mijares consider themselves race partners instead of sponsors.

The GoRun expansion should be complete by July or early August.

Innovative Vein Solutions expanding Winfield

WICHITA — Innovative Vein Solutions is expanding again.

Physician Paul Cheatum opened his first clinic in 2009 at the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich.

About nine months ago, he expanded with a satellite office in Hutchinson. Next month, he’s adding one in Winfield at Winfield Medical Arts.

“We’ll be offering all of the normal services we offer here, particularly the varicose vein treatments and spider vein treatments,” Cheatum says. “Eventually we hope to take some aesthetic services down there as well.”

He’s planning to expand to western Kansas next year.

Cheatum says the expansions should save a lot of his customers a drive.

“It’s nice to be closer to them so they can get services more conveniently.”

Liquor Cabinet and Cigars & More coming to the Village at Greenwich

WICHITA — A new liquor store and cigar shop are coming to the Village at Greenwich at 21st and Greenwich.

Anisha Patel plans to open the Liquor Cabinet and Cigars & More in 3,000 square feet by Aug. 1.

“We’re going to try to push for before that,” she says.

Her brother, Jay, is doing a lot of the work to get the store ready.

Anisha Patel owns America’s Best Value Inn & Suites in Hesston. That’s kind of what inspired her to go into a new line of work.

“I want to try to trend away from a 24-hour business,” she says. “If someone doesn’t show up, you’re filling in that shift.”

She thinks the liquor store business will be more low key.

“Doesn’t require too much of a strain on the brain.”

Not that she’s giving up the hotel business.

“It’s what brought me my luck in life, so you don’t get rid of that.”

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