Carrie Rengers

Police sergeant seeks buyer for two tea stores

Most people probably would agree that being a police officer is a demanding enough job without adding any extra stress.

Wichita Police Department Sgt. Kelly Mar agrees. That's why she's decided to try to sell her two Chelmsford Tea & Gifts stores, which she's owned since 2005.

Mar practically has tea in her blood. Her mother is from England and her father from China, and she loves teas from both countries.

Still, it was ambitious of her to buy the tea shops.

"That or I'm crazy," Mar says, laughing. "I don't know which."

Mar's daughter, Krystal Eicher , was a huge help running the stores, which are at NewMarket Square at 21st and Maize and Cambridge Market at 21st and Webb.

Eicher's husband was transferred overseas, though, and it's been challenging for Mar to run the businesses and website without her daughter's daily help.

"It's just a little bit too much for me," she says.

Mar regrets having to sell, though, because "it is a really fun business."

She says there are a lot of tea drinkers in Wichita, and her market is much bigger than local sales only.

"We carry a huge variety of tea, and we ship all over the United States and Canada."

If Mar can't find a buyer anytime soon, she won't close.

"We'll just keep it going," she says. "Luckily, I have an incredible staff."

Hot move

Get Franked is moving, but not to Old Town as planned.

The hot dog restaurant, which currently is at Douglas and Grove, is moving across the street to 2322 E. Douglas.

"It's going to be a little bigger (and) a lot nicer," says co-owner Brad Standing .

He says there will be a lot more parking, too.

Standing had been looking at space just down from Larkspur, but he says, "It was going to be too much to renovate it (and) get it restaurant ready."

Get Franked's last day in its current space is May 8. The restaurant will be open in its new space in early June.

A Lawrence location is a possibility one day, too. Standing recently looked for space there.

"I was just checking out places up there in case I didn't find anything down here."

You don't say

"Flying was fun when you were a customer ... not a suspect."

—A tweet on Twitter Monday from Wichita resident and Boeing retiree Charlie Claycomb (@otrunchuck), who just returned from a trip where he chose to drive instead of fly

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