Bosley's Tire Superstore is not only surviving a tough economy, it's thriving. Owner Lonnie Bosley has purchased the former Pep Boys Auto building at 9045 E. Kellogg for his second store.
"It's going to be a fantastic retail outlet because of where it's at," Bosley says of being on Kellogg and so close to the Turnpike.
"Somebody had this bought, and they couldn't come up with the money," Bosley says of the Pep Boys space. "It was just a quick deal."
He'll have 11 bays open in 23,000 square feet within three weeks.
Bosley also is remodeling his 30,000-square-foot, 17-bay store at Broadway and MacArthur, but nothing else will change there.
He regularly stocks 8,000 wheels and 15,000 tires.
"Just last week we had 43 semis full of tires," Bosley says of trucks that sat next to the store until he could make room for the merchandise.
It's part of what Bosley says drives sales.
"When they come to us, we're going to have it in stock," he says. "We pull clear from Kansas City, Oklahoma City — people come from all over just for wheels."
Bosley purchased the business from his parents about 10 years ago, and he says sales have been up 20 to 35 percent every year since.
Last year "was supposed to be a really bad year," he says. Sales were up 25 percent, though.
Now, Bosley is looking for store sites in north and west Wichita.
He thinks his company has a reputation for honesty and that that's a big part of its success.
"A lot of places you can't trust anymore," Bosley says.
"God's blessed us, and we do the rest."
Busy, busy Ben
Drury Southwest is moving ahead with its major overhaul of the Broadview Hotel , which includes reconfiguring its restaurant space and finding an outside entity to run it.
There's not a final deal yet, but it looks like Ben Arnold of Corporate Caterers of Wichita will be the new restaurant operator and handle catering for the banquet room.
Arnold also recently took over the former Olive Tree Bistro banquet space near 29th and Rock Road.
A well-known Wichita chef is likely to run the restaurant for Arnold.
Arnold isn't commenting, and Broadview general manager Scott Ragatz will say only that Drury is still in negotiations for the space.
The new two-story restaurant will be near First and Waco. The front of the hotel will face the river by the time renovations are complete.
"We're excited about the new plan," Ragatz says. "We've waited a long time for the proper ownership to come in and have the wherewithal and the imagination to put a project like this together."
You don't say
"It was also so sweet of them to surprise us with front-row seats!"
—Missy Stevens of Freddy's Frozen Custard and Steakburgers , who delivered free Freddy's custard to Taylor Swift and her entourage before Thursday's show and unexpectedly got to stay for the concert