Cityscape

Free doughnuts abound in KCK as Krispy Kreme opens 1,000th store

Doughnut fans waited overnight for the opening of Krispy Kreme’s 1,000th store, at 7648 State Ave. in Kansas City, Kan. The first person in the door got a dozen free donuts a week for a year, and the next 99 got a dozen donuts a month for a year.
Doughnut fans waited overnight for the opening of Krispy Kreme’s 1,000th store, at 7648 State Ave. in Kansas City, Kan. The first person in the door got a dozen free donuts a week for a year, and the next 99 got a dozen donuts a month for a year. The Kansas City Star

Krispy Kreme on Tuesday celebrated the opening of its 1,000th shop, which just happened to be in Kansas City, Kan.

When the shop opened at 6 a.m. Tuesday, the first person in line received a punch card good for a dozen original glazed doughnuts every week for a year. The next 99 people got a punch card for a dozen free doughnuts every month for a year. And the first 150 people in line also were handed commemorative T-shirts.

Krispy Kreme officials said people started lining up at 3 p.m. Monday, braving frigid overnight temperatures.

The new shop, at 7648 State Ave. in the redeveloped Wyandotte Plaza, also gave out a free doughnut to the first 1,000 people in line, as did most of the other Krispy Kreme locations in 24 countries around the world as part of the company-wide celebrations.

Pat Morrison, general manager of a Jack in the Box in Kansas City, Kan., made the 7-mile trip to pick up some doughnuts for her team. She moved to the Kansas side of the state line five years ago when Wyandotte Plaza was in decline.

“Nothing was here, they even needed to fix the road,” she said. “ So to see this economic growth and everything over here, what it is doing is bringing stimulation to the area. They even have a Lutfi’s (Fried Fish).”

The new Krispy Kreme is the only one in the metro — and only one of 20 in the chain — to feature a new smaller footprint with open kitchen and a bigger viewing window where customers can watch the process.

John Hirt, regional director or the Winston-Salem, N.C.-based company, said the shop is about 2,800-square-feet. The smaller size allows the company more options in expanding to developments that might not have had room for an average-size Krispy Kreme at about 6,000-square-feet. That also allows the company, which was founded in 1937, to expand more quickly.

It is the fourth Krispy Kreme for the metro and the company is considering opening two more area locations this year. Officials declined to specify markets.

Wyandotte Plaza, which dates to 1961, is in the heart of an under-served area in Kansas City, Kan. In 2014, the Price Chopper in Wyandotte Plaza moved to a new 68,000-square-foot building in the center, and MeMa’s Old-Fashioned Bakery relocated to the center from the Legends Outlets Kansas City.

Petsmart is scheduled to open on April 11 and Marshalls is scheduled to open on May 7. An estimated 40,000 vehicles pass by the 230,000-square-foot center each day.

Restaurant closings

Johnson County has lost two Japanese restaurants.

Kaiyo Authentic Japanese Restaurant recently closed in Camelot Court shopping center after nearly nine years of operations at 4308 W. 119th St., Leawood.

David Loo, who owned the restaurant with his wife Karen Ming, said he has been on a month-to-month lease for the last five years and now his landlord wanted the location for another tenant. Officials with Camelot Court declined to comment.

“I miss my regular customers. They are saying ‘Where am I going to get good sushi?’ ” Loo said.

So Loo is expanding his offerings at his sushi operation in Cosentino’s Market Downtown at 10 E. 13th St. in the Power & Light District.

Sushi Gin Japanese Cuisine recently closed after nearly 20 years in a 2,957-square-foot space in the 96 & Nall Shoppes at 9559 Nall Ave., Overland Park. The owners did not return phone calls but the space is now for lease.

To reach Joyce Smith, call 816-234-4692 or send email to jsmith@kcstar.com. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter at JoyceKC

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