Jimmie’s Diner at 21st and Tyler in 2016
Wichita learned back in March that a Pizza Ranch restaurant would take over the space at 2121 N. Tyler that had previously held a west-side Jimmie’s Diner and was known as the longtime home of Tommy’s.
But since then, nothing has really been happening at the space, which is just across the street from the Warren Theatre. Lately, I’ve been getting several e-mails a week from people wondering if Pizza Ranch is still coming.
It is, said Doug Wessley, the restaurateur bringing Pizza Ranch to Wichita and who already has LaMar’s Donuts and Cold Stone Creamery franchises in Wichita. He’s hoping it will be ready to open in December.
Wessley, who originally had hoped for a fall opening, is putting the new Pizza Ranch into the entire 7,500 square feet that Tommy’s once had, and his crew had trouble planning around two structural walls that couldn’t be moved, he said.
“It took a lot longer than we wanted to trying to get the layout done,” he said. “But it’s going be pretty cool once it’s done.”
He estimates that people will start noticing construction happening in about a month.
Pizza Ranch, a chain founded in Iowa in 1981, features a buffet offering not only pizza but also big salad bar, fried chicken and fixings and desserts. It also has a big arcade room.