Carrie Rengers

Northwest side to get frozen-yogurt bar

By July, when it's particularly heating up, the west side will have a new way to cool down. The self-serve frozen-yogurt franchise Orange Leaf is coming to the retail center at 21st and Tyler in front of the Warren Theatre .

"I'm not kidding," says franchisee Jeff Finnell , "by the end of the summer, people are going to be talking about this."

Finnell and his wife, Kathy , also own Holy Trinity Catholic Books and Gifts at 8651 W. Central.

They used to live in Wichita and are now in Oklahoma.

Orange Leaf, which has about 30 sites nationally, used to be based in California but recently moved to Oklahoma City.

"We just felt like this would go over very, very well in Wichita," Jeff Finnell says.

There will be 16 flavors from which to choose along with 40 toppings.

"And then when you're all done creating your masterpiece, you take it to the cash register, you put it on a scale and you pay for it by the ounce," Finnell says.

"The store will be fun," he says. "It'll be a great place to come and hang out and grab a healthy snack."

Bradley Tidemann of J.P. Weigand & Sons handled the deal for the 2,300-square-foot space. Ink Construction is the contractor.

Finnell says it makes sense to mention Emprise Bank , too.

At a time when a lot of new business owners are having difficulty getting financing, Finnell had the opposite experience.

"Emprise helped us get the bookstore going," he says. "So we went to them with this idea. It was just really easy."

Specifically, Finnell says, "Gary Watkins ... made the process easy."

Finnell also has looked at east-side sites, but he says, "Let's just do one first and then see what happens."

Hot news

Pho Hot on Pawnee near the Canal Route is closing.

No one with the restaurant is commenting yet, but it looks like Pho Hot will remain open for at least a couple of more months.

After that, the Rock Road Pho Hot Bistro will be the only one left.

The original Pho Hot always seems to have a crowd, particularly at lunch, but the lease is up soon and the owners don't want to renew.

The Pho Hot at 306 N. Rock opened in August.

Another Pho Hot at NewMarket Square at 21st and Maize is still in the works, though it may not happen until the economy improves.

You don't say

"Maybe now he will stop texting me wanting to know when the Eagles are coming."

Intrust Bank Arena spokeswoman Sarah Haertl , referring to Eagle sports columnist and Eagles fanatic Bob Lutz's constant pestering about the band (which is coming to Wichita on June 30)