Two longtime businesses have to move to make room for Cargill at the company's Wichita headquarters at 151 N. Main.
The Avenue Style salon has to move from the building, and Piccadilly Express has the option to move to the smaller salon space.
"We'd like to have a food service operator there, and that would be something for Piccadilly to consider," says Cargill spokesman Mark Klein . "They're sure welcome to it."
Klein says Cargill needs the Piccadilly space for taste panels to test new Cargill products.
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Currently the panels meet at the company's 29th Street North site.
The company is moving about 80 employees downtown, and that will cut in half the number of people available for tastings there, Klein says.
Naji Toubia, chairman of Piccadilly owner Latour Management , doesn't mind having to move.
"Oh, I think it's a good opportunity," he says.
Toubia says his current space has outdated equipment.
"We'll have an upgraded facility," he says of the new space.
Toubia says the details are still being worked out on how much of the upgrades Cargill will provide.
Although the new space is smaller, Toubia says, "It'll do the same job."
And the restaurant still will have access to the building's courtyard, where diners can eat.
The owners of Avenue Style are less excited about having to relocate.
"Wish we didn't have to move," says Keith Shaw , who owns the business with his wife, Sherry .
The salon, which has seven stylists, a manicurist and a receptionist, has been at 151 N. Main for 15 of its 37 years in business.
"We want to stay centrally located," Keith Shaw says.
He says Avenue Style serves a lot of downtowners, but he says a lot of people come from surrounding areas, too.
Klein says Cargill is working with Piccadilly and Avenue Style on the timing of the moves. Nothing is set yet.
"We all plan to stay together," Shaw says of the stylists at his salon. "We'll keep business going just as normal."
Former F5 newspaper publisher Mike Marlett is the new executive director of the Wichita Association for the Motion Picture Arts , which is the nonprofit parent organization that runs the Tallgrass Film Festival .
"This is going to be... my day gig," Marlett says.
He's the first person to formally have the position since 2005, when festival founder Timothy Gruver died.
The position is not a typical 9-to-5 kind of job, though.
"The workload's going to be a little uneven, but when there is stuff to do, it's intense," Marlett says. "It's the kind of thing I'm going to wind up spending too much time and getting in trouble with my wife over."
Part of Marlett's goal will be to have more events tied to the festival throughout the year, like the Third Thursday film series.
"Those have been colossally successful," he says.
"We discovered that the more we do year round, the more attendance we have at the festival."
Last year, 10,000 people attended the festival over three days.
"This year, we had a 420 percent net increase in our income," Marlett says. "We did that in a horrible, horrible economy in a year that other festivals shut down. And we turned around and made a little bit of money."
A very little bit — but the $20,000 the festival is in the black is a huge step forward.
WAMPA also is moving from its small downtown office to a larger space at 545 N. Woodlawn on Feb. 1.
Marlett wants more people and businesses involved with supporting the festival.
He hopes that his position — even if he's not the one in it — can one day be a more traditional full-time job.
"Right now the board's paying me what the board can afford," Marlett says. But someday, he says, "It can be a well-paying job for somebody."
You don't say
"I was even told by a couple of banks that I couldn't do it, which kind of hurt my feelings a bit."
—Wink Hartman Sr. , speaking at the Andover Chamber of Commerce annual meeting Friday, on criticism he heard before building his Hartman Arena last year