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O’Reilly Auto Parts plans new local site

03/09/2012 5:00 AM

03/09/2012 7:26 AM

O’Reilly Auto Parts is working on another new Wichita site.

“That’s going to put us at … 14 locations,” district manager Cody Zimmerman says of the greater Wichita area.

He can’t yet say exactly where the new location will be, though. Sources say it’ll be in the 37th Street North and Maize Road area.

“I know we’ve been hunting property up there,” Zimmerman says.

He says the company has eyed several sites along Maize Road between 29th Street and K-96. The site may locate just off of Maize Road.

“It’s going to be seen visibly from Maize for sure,” Zimmerman says.

Last year, O’Reilly opened 170 new sites nationwide.

“This year, we’re looking at 180,” Zimmerman says. “We’re very active as a company.”

He says he’ll let us know when there’s a done deal here.

Easy come, easy go

If you happened to see a recent Craigslist ad saying that McCormick & Schmick’s is looking for employees for a new restaurant here, there’s some disappointing news.

“You know, somebody pranked us,” says a spokesman for the seafood chain. “They just picked some random cities and posted a Craigslist deal.”

The spokesman, who prefers not to be named, has no clue why it happened. Nor can he say if the chain, which has 85 locations – the closest of which is on the Plaza in Kansas City – would ever come to Wichita.

“It’s a hypothetical that I wouldn’t even be able to answer.”

He says the chain isn’t growing.

“We expand when it’s smart to do so,” he says.

Numbers game

Homecooked Shortcuts isn’t the only Wichita company that has entered Walmart’s Get on the Shelf competition, which could land its microwave vegetable bag on the store’s shelves ( Have You Heard? Feb. 29).

Numbersandletters.com also submitted a video to tout its reflective house numbers. Joni Barthelman’s family started the company, which her son, Eli, now owns.

“Lo and behold, people started writing, ‘Where have you been? … We’ve been looking for you,’ ” Joni Barthelman says of the product’s immediate popularity.

She says the numbers are larger and more attractive than most on the market. They’re reflective “so emergency services can see you at 3 o’clock in the morning.”

Barthelman says she’s not concerned about winning the Walmart competition.

“What we’re looking for most is the exposure,” she says. “Obviously, we think the exposure will be huge.”

To see the company’s video, check out www.votesafety1st.com.

You don’t say

“I blame Wichita. Here’s why: That’s where Kirstie Alley is from. I believe that the Scientologists have gotten together … and they have created a new strain of virus to try to kill me, like the virus in ‘ Contagion.’ And I believe that they are working in tandem with Oprah and Ryan Seacrest.”

– Comedian Kathy Griffin in a Huffington Post interview on how she got the bird flu, most likely while on a recent tour that included a stop in Wichita

Carrie Rengers first reported these items on her blog. Be among the first to get her business scoops at blogs.kansas.com/haveyouheard.

Carrie Rengers first reported these items on her blog. Be among the first to get her business scoops at blogs.kansas.com/haveyouheard.

About Carrie Rengers

Carrie Rengers joined The Eagle's Business team in 2002 despite her inability to even balance a checkbook. Fortunately for her, and readers, her Have You Heard? blog is about business scoops and contains lots of news but almost no math.

A Michigan native, Carrie’s father was quite tragically transferred to Little Rock, Ark., in the middle of her sophomore year of high school. To make matters worse, her parents put her in a girls school. She recovered, though, and went on to enjoy being an English major at Hendrix College (the Harvard of the Ozarks, don’t you know). She worked for the weekly Arkansas Business and the statewide daily Arkansas Democrat-Gazette before moving to Wichita to be with her favorite writer and cook, husband Joe Stumpe.

Carrie encourages readers to contact her with tips, questions, behind-the-scenes business news and even funny quotes from business people. Reach her at 316-268-6340 or crengers@wichitaeagle.com

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