Utilitarian Workshop offers weekend shoppers treasures by home-grown artists

04/29/2014 11:00 AM

04/29/2014 5:06 PM

Cascone’s Italian Restaurant has been a landmark on North Oak Trafficway for 60 years. So when Cascone’s Grill North opened recently, many Northlanders walked in expecting to order from a similar menu.

The grill does offer a handful of pasta dishes, but take note: The Cascone’s grills and the Cascone’s restaurants are only related by their shared Cascone family roots.

The Cascones started out in the River Market. Then John Cascone and another brother, Leroy, opened Cascone’s Italian Restaurant on North Oak Trafficway in 1954. John’s sons later took over that location and then expanded with an Overland Park restaurant, Johnny Cascone’s Italian Restaurant.

John’s and Leroy’s brother Sam Cascone was operating the River Market grill when he passed away in 1992, and his sons, Frank and George, took over.

So the two grills and the two restaurants have long operated under separate ownership by Cascone cousins.

But when new River Market restaurants started cutting into sales at Cascone’s Grill, Frank and George Cascone decided to open a second grill. Frank Cascone is the owner and operator of the new grill in the Picture Hills Shopping Center at 6427 N. Cosby Ave. George Cascone remains at the River Market location at 15-17 E. Fifth St.

Along with a few pasta dishes, the new Cascone’s Grill North offers items like biscuits and gravy, omelets, pancakes, breakfast sandwiches, and entree salads, as well as daily specials including fried fish, fried chicken, and corned beef and cabbage. There’s also the Big Sam sandwich — Italian sausage, egg, cheese and hash browns on Italian toast — named after Sam Cascone.

Hours are currently 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. It is closed Monday.

A showcase for Kansas City artists

Utilitarian Workshop wants to showcase Kansas City artists — whether they live and work here now, or are from here and live elsewhere. So items are from artists from Portland to Kansas City to New York.

They include children’s contemporary organic clothing, scarves, feather mobiles, leather earrings, woven metal bracelets, tiny porcelain geese figurines, coffee from Thou Mayest Coffee Roasters, organic cotton throws and handmade wool pillows.

A vintage section is stocked with work boots, 1940s-era handmade men’s shoes from New York, flannel shirts, vests, ties and tie clips, wallets and pennants. Other “found” objects are sprinkled throughout the space at 1659 Summit St. — a collection of ceramic roosters, collectible plates.

Owners John Anderson and his wife, Nicole Williams, used Kickstarter to help fund the shop, which opened in July 2013.

Currently hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Quick bites

• The Cook Shack Cafe recently closed at 8950 Wornall Road. The 1,320-square-foot freestanding building is now for lease.

• The locally owned Blanc Palette plans to open May 2 at 17 E. Kansas St., Suite 100, in downtown Liberty. Customers will get step-by-step instructions by an artist to do paintings to take home. They also can bring in their drinks of choice — from bottled water to wine. For more information, visit www.blancpalette.com

• The Pink Chandelier – A Vintage Market, closed its Town Center Plaza location at the end of March and now has a weekend-only store in the West Bottoms, on the third floor at 1420 W. 13th Terrace (at 13th Terrace and Hickory Street). It will be open Friday through Sunday on First Friday weekends, and Friday and Saturdays the rest of the month.

The shop sells home decor and furniture in several styles — vintage, cottage, French, farmhouse and urban — along with fashions. It also offers workshops, as well as custom painting and design services.

• Casey’s General Store is to open April 30 at 1111 N. Buckner Tarsney Road, Grain Valley. Casey’s, based in Ankeny, Iowa, owns and operates nearly 1,800 convenience stores in 14 Midwestern states.

• A Smoothie King opened April 29 at 7121 N.W. Barry Road. The shops sell smoothies and healthy snacks.

• Rue21, a discount retailer of contemporary clothing for young men and women, plans a Thursday opening in The Shops at Boardwalk, 8618 N. Boardwalk Ave., Suite 9.

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