Wichita's last Waldenbooks is closing. The Waldenbooks at Towne West Square is one of 200 stores Borders Group plans to close in its Waldenbooks and Borders Express segment, which includes outlet stores.
"We think it's a good strategy for our overall business," says spokeswoman Mary Davis .
Borders Group, which is based in Ann Arbor, Mich., is the nation's second-largest bookstore chain.
"The rightsizing allows us to reduce a number of stores with operating losses," Davis says.
She won't say how well the Waldenbooks performed here.
There's no firm closing date, but it likely will be early in the new year.
"Our goal really is to emerge with a significantly smaller, more profitable Waldenbooks small business," Davis says.
Two new groups are forming in Delano to further progress and cohesiveness in the area.
For a number of years, there have been several groups working toward those goals. There's a historical group, a neighborhood association, a group of clergy members and, until a couple of years ago, a business association.
There's long been talk about the need for a larger group — a community development corporation.
"Everybody was kind of waiting for... the other group to do it," says Karen Cravens , president of the Delano Neighborhood Association . "There's been a lot of individual interest (and) energy."
She's now spearheading the formation of the corporation "to get
everybody on the same page and give them a flag to rally under basically."
That's spurring the reorganization of a business association.
This week, Jason Dilts of ROK ICT was named provisional president, though the group is still forming.
Dilts, who also is a freelance writer for The Wichita Eagle , says the purpose is "to highlight the unique flavor and characteristics of Delano, specifically as it relates to businesses."
For instance, if a business is relocating, Dilts wants there to be someone to say, "Hey, here's Delano.... This could be a good fit for you."
The next neighborhood meeting is Nov. 17 at 6:30 p.m. at West Side Christian Church at 1819 W. Douglas. There will be discussions about advancing the groups.
Dilts has high hopes.
"Delano's a good example of what a community can do if they pool all their resources and work together."
You don't say
"The only people I haven't seen are Charles and Liz Koch ."
—Wichita resident and longtime Barrier's shopper Pat Hysko's comment about the who's who of Wichita shopping the store's going-out-of-business presale Monday, which she described as a cross between a wake and a social gathering