Wi­chita, the Water­front are get­ting a new Ital­ian restau­rant in June

The Wichita Eagle - - Business - BY CAR­RIE RENGERS [email protected]­chi­taea­gle.com Con­tribut­ing: Denise Neil of The Ea­gle Car­rie Rengers: 316-268-6340, @Car­rieRengers

Af­ter a two-and-hal­fyear search, the

Water­front has se­lected a new restau­rant for the for­mer Fox and Hound space.

Old Spaghetti Fac­tory will open there June 24.

“This part of the deal came to­gether rel­a­tively quickly, which is unique to a lot of the things we do,” says the Water­front’s Stephen Clark II. “They’re a re­ally good fit.”

Clark says his in­ten­tion was al­ways to ei­ther re­place Fox and Hound with an­other sports-themed bar or to find an Ital­ian restau­rant.

“Wi­chita has a lot of restau­rants, but if there’s one area it’s lack­ing is good Ital­ian op­tions,” he says.

The Oregon-based Old Spaghetti Fac­tory is “pretty eclec­tic,” Clark says, with “things that are kind of unique.”

He says the at­mos­phere is “old world” with lots of chan­de­liers and var­i­ous seat­ing op­tions, which in­cludes din­ing in a trol­ley within the restau­rant.

“That’s one of their sig­na­ture moves.”

Clark says prices are mid­dle of the road.

“It’s a fam­ily-focused con­cept.”

He says that will go well with other fam­ily con­cepts al­ready at the Water­front, such as Red Robin, which Clark says is the No. 1 Red Robin in the coun­try.

Clark says de­mo­li­tion work started this week on the for­mer Fox and Hound space as it be­gins its trans­for­ma­tion into Old Spaghetti Fac­tory.

“We ex­pect it to do re­ally well.”

‘RE­CON­SID­ER­ING’ CHURCH

Dis­trict Church ,a rel­a­tively new church in De­lano, has signed a lease for a one-time post of­fice there. That doesn’t mean wor­ship ser­vices are nec­es­sar­ily mov­ing there, though.

Since its in­cep­tion in the sum­mer of 2017, Dis­trict Church has been op­er­at­ing out of Franklin Ele­men­tary School at 214 S. El­iz­a­beth St.

With its new lease at 128 S. Martin­son, lead pas­tor says Travis Roberts says he’d been think­ing of us­ing the space for chil­dren’s pro­gram­ming, tu­tor­ing and men­tor­ing and as a place for mem­bers to meet for classes or small-group dis­cus­sions.

He says he ini­tially en­vi­sioned con­tin­u­ing ser­vices at the school.

“But now we’re kind of re­con­sid­er­ing,” Roberts says. “Now we’re kick­ing around the idea . . . to make it our ac­tual church space for Sun­day morn­ings — for ev­ery­thing.”

He started re­con­fig­ur­ing the build­ing’s space, which is just over 5,000 square feet.

“If we can get ev­ery­thing out of this space, why wouldn’t we?”

Roberts says it still de­pends on per­mit­ting, but he says he’s start­ing to re­ally like the idea of the church hav­ing ev­ery­thing at the new build­ing.

“It would also let the neigh­bor­hood know we’re re­ally here to plant roots,” he says.

“Our pas­sion and drive is to be a good church for the De­lano neigh­bor­hood. That’s kind of our M.O. And that’s why we’re called the Dis­trict Church.”

Stephanie Wise of John T. Arnold As­so­ciates han­dled the deal for the three-year lease.

With the move, Roberts says he’ll try to reach out to more col­lege stu­dents for men­tor­ing of Wi­chita school dis­trict stu­dents through Dis­trict Church.

“That’s one of the things that we’re re­ally look­ing for­ward to with this space.”

About 100 peo­ple at­tend church weekly, he says.

“As we con­tinue to grow . . . it may not house enough growth for us to move for­ward.”

For now, though, Roberts says, “We might be able to have a re­ally nice neigh­bor­hood church . . . and cre­ate a re­ally neat, in­ti­mate wor­ship en­vi­ron­ment for peo­ple.”

HAPPY DAYS

Com­plain­ing about work is a pop­u­lar pas­time for many, but ap­par­ently a lot of work­ers in Wi­chita are quite happy.

So says a study by Ku­nunu, a work­place in­sights plat­form founded in Aus­tria in 2007.

Of the top 50 most­pop­u­lar U.S. cities, Wi­chita ranks No. 16 for em­ployee hap­pi­ness.

Fac­tors in­cluded com­pany cul­ture, co-worker in­ter­ac­tion, ex­pec­ta­tions and em­ployee in­volve­ment in de­ci­sions, trust for in­de­pen­dence and, of course, over­all sat­is­fac­tion with em­ploy­ers.

Mi­ami and Los An­ge­les were the top two cities, and nearby Ok­la­homa City made the list at No. 8.

Kansas City, Mo., is No.

25. Neigh­bor­ing states also had cities that ranked at the bot­tom of hap­pi­ness. In Texas, that in­cludes El Paso at No. 45, Dal­las at No. 46 and Hous­ton at No. 47. In Colorado, Colorado Springs ranks at No.

44.

Round­ing out the list as the least-happy work­ers: New York­ers.

JAIME GREEN File photo

A new restau­rant called Old Spaghetti Fac­tory is open­ing where Fox and Hound used to be at the Water­front.

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