Yoder Meats to open at Normandie Center

WICHITA — Less than six months after opening in the former YB Meats space in west Wichita, Yoder Meats is making plans to open a second store.

The new one also will be in former YB space, this time on the east side at Normandie Center at Central and Woodlawn.

“It was all set up, so it was a good deal for us,” says Alan Waggoner, who owns the business with his wife, Carol.

The two purchased the four-decade-old Yoder Meats in Yoder, Kan., two years ago.

They didn’t intend on expanding into Wichita with retail sites, but Alan Waggoner says he noticed sales slipping at YB Meats — including Yoder products — and told the owner he’d be interested in buying the business if he ever wanted to sell.

They had a deal within a week. That was November. The sale closed in January.

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Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market most likely not coming to Normandie Center

WICHITA — It looks like the potential deal for a Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market at Normandie Center is off.

Debbie McNeal of RP Realty Partners says she has no idea what’s going on with Wal-Mart, but she’s trying to find new tenants for the Star Lumber and Whole Foods spaces.

That’s “because the owners told me to go ahead.”

Whole Foods is moving to the former Gessler Drug Co. space to make room for Wal-Mart.

Gessler had planned on moving anyway, but its time line was moved up due to Wal-Mart. It’s now where AAA Kansas used to be next to Il Vicino near Douglas and Oliver.

McNeal has 32,000 square feet to lease where Whole Foods is vacating and Star Lumber used to be.

She has another 4,000 square feet where YB Meats once was. And she has some office space north of the former Star Lumber building as well.

The only certain Neighborhood Market for Wichita so far is at Central and Maize.

Yoder Meats owners are purchasing YB Meats

WICHITA — Only one week ago, Yoder Meats owner Alan Waggoner called YB Meats owner Eric Kauffman to see if he might be interested in selling his store.

Kauffman was, and now the longtime store at 798 N. West St. will operate as Yoder Meats. It officially opens Wednesday (though there may have been a sale or two in the last day or so) and the deal will close in January.

“He was motivated to be done, and I was motivated to take over,” says Waggoner, who owns a meat plant and retail shop in Yoder with his wife, Carol.

If a one-week turnaround seems like a crazy kind of time frame, Waggoner agrees.

“Yeah, way crazy.”

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YB Meats GM explains Normandie closing

WICHITA — As we reported Monday, YB Meats at Normandie Center closed after business Saturday.

Now, general manager Mike Wedman explains why.

“Things were going well, then all of a sudden, we took just kind of a downturn,” he says.

“We couldn’t really place a finger on one particular thing,” Wedman says. He does think overall, the store is a “victim of the economy, possibly.”

“It’s kind of the way it is all over town,” Wedman says.

The west-side YB Meats has seen a decrease in business, too, though not as much.

At Normandie, Wedman says, “It just got to the point where it didn’t make sense anymore to keep struggling through.”

Instead, he says, it made more sense to “regroup and focus all of our efforts to . . . keep being successful on the west side.”

YB Meats at Normandie Center is closed

WICHITA — After about two years in business, YB Meats in Normandie Center at Central and Woodlawn has closed.

The store’s last day in business apparently was Saturday.

Owner Eric Kauffman couldn’t be reached for comment.

When he opened the store in 2007, Kauffman said, “The biggest drive (to do it) is the number of people who come over to the west store and say they wished we were on the east side.”

For 21 years, there was a lone YB Meats at 798 N. West St.

That location is still open.