Dining With Denise Neil

A 30-year-old Wichita restaurant is closing for upgrades

Jimmie's Diner on North Rock Rd. will get lots of cosmetic improvements during a two-week closing.
Jimmie's Diner on North Rock Rd. will get lots of cosmetic improvements during a two-week closing. The Wichita Eagle

Don’t panic when it turns June and you find that the Jimmie’s Diner on North Rock Road is closed up tight.

It’s only temporary.

Owners of the diner at 3111 N. Rock Road have decided to close it for 12 to 14 days starting on May 30. They have some plumbing issues to take care of inside the building that will require them to tear up the floors, and closing is the only option, said Linda Davidson, who owns Wichita’s three Jimmie’s Diners with her husband, Jack, and her son, Joe.

While closed, Linda said, the owners will go ahead with some needed upgrades in the dining room. They plan to resurface booths, paint, add new light fixtures and get new carpet.

“Since it’s our 30th anniversary, we thought it would be a good time to go ahead and do some upgrades, some cosmetic things,” Linda said.

Also, the building’s landlord is using the down time to resurface the parking lot, she said.

The owners also have decided to get a new sign in front. They’re removing the current sign that identifies the restaurant as being part of the Kings X chain and will replace it with the current logo.

The Kings-X tradition started in 1938, when A.J. “Jimmie” King bought several White Castle stores in Wichita and changed their names to Kings-X. Through the years, Kings-X restaurants operated in spots all over town, but they’ve all since closed. The Davidsons bought the remaining restaurants in the chain in 2007 and 2011. But the last restaurant bearing the King’s X name, the one at 21st and Amidon, closed in 2012 to make way for a CVS.

“It’s kind of the end of an era,” Linda Davidson said.

Fans can follow the construction and get updates about the planned reopening on the Jimmie’s Diner Facebook page.

The Davidsons are encouraging Rock Road customers to visit the two other Jimmie’s Diners, at 2121 N. Tyler Road and 1519 George Washington, during the closing. People who do can register at each location to win a $100 gift card, she said. They’ll draw one winner from each location the day the Rock Road restaurant reopens.