Mar 25, 2020 6:03 PM

Local, area businesses among HIRE loan recipients

Posted Mar 25, 2020 6:03 PM
<b>Bogey's is one of the local businesses that will receive a HIRE Fund loan. </b>Photo courtesy the <a href="https://www.facebook.com/Bogeys-250383960006/">Bogey's</a> Facebook page.
Bogey's is one of the local businesses that will receive a HIRE Fund loan. Photo courtesy the Bogey's Facebook page.

TOPEKA – Within 48 hours of Governor Laura Kelly announcing the establishment of the Hospitality Industry Relief Emergency (HIRE) Fund, all $5 million allocated for the loan program have been awarded.

“The hospitality industry in Kansas was one of the first to be hit financially by the COVID-19 crisis,” Governor Kelly said. “Department of Commerce Secretary David Toland and the teams at Commerce and NetWork Kansas moved swiftly to stand up the HIRE Fund program and process applications in a short period to help us quickly get these critical dollars into the hands of hospitality businesses across the state.”

The initial response to the HIRE Fund program was overwhelming. More than 1,400 applications for funding were received, with more than 800 submitted within 24 hours of the program being announced.

In total, 344 Kansas hospitality businesses will receive HIRE Fund loans. In the Kansas City metro area, $2 million will be distributed amongst 136 businesses; in Sedgwick County, $1 million will be distributed to 68 companies; and across the rest of the state, $2 million will be distributed to 140 businesses.

“We know that many Kansas businesses are struggling right now, and we know that $5 million doesn’t come close to making up the losses that the hospitality industry and others have and will continue to incur,” Secretary Toland said. “But anything we can do – no matter how big or how small – to infuse dollars into Kansas businesses to help them make payroll, pay their electric bills or meet their mortgage obligations, we’re going to do it.”

The HIRE Fund, which was announced Friday, offers Kansas hospitality businesses including event and convention centers, restaurants, bars and lodging facilities one-time, zero-interest loans up to $20,000. The program is administered by NetWork Kansas, a non-profit with a system of small business loan underwriters across 64 Kansas counties.

“Standing up a new loan fund within a matter of days wouldn’t have been possible without our partners at NetWork Kansas,” Secretary Toland said. “Their team spent hours over the weekend processing and responding to the hundreds of applications received, and we couldn’t be more grateful for their support to get these dollars quickly into the hands of those who need it most right now.”

Local and area businesses that are recipients of the HIRE Fund loans include the following.

DICKINSON COUNTY

Abilene's Victorian, LLC, Abilene

Ortus Cafe, Inc. Abilene,

ELLSWORTH COUNTY

Mugs’s Downtown Bohemian Bakery, Ellsworth

MARION COUNTY

Historic Elgin Hotel, Marion

Wagon Wheel Express, Marion

MCPHERSON COUNTY

Five Loaves LLC, McPherson

REPUBLIC COUNTY

Wood Shop Pizza and Coffee, Belleville

SALINE COUNTY

Blue Skye Brewery and Eats, Salina

Bogey's Inc., Salina

DDR Concepts LLC dba Martinelli's Little Italy, Salina

Tapi Ratan Hospitality LLC, Salina

While there are no funds currently available, applications are still be accepted should future dollars for the HIRE Fund be made available. Hospitality businesses should visit https://kansascommerce.gov/hirefund to complete their application. 

Businesses also can apply for federal disaster loan assistance up to $2 million through the U.S. Small Business Administration at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.

Continue Reading Salina Post
Mar 25, 2020 6:03 PM
UPDATE: SM Hanson cancels Heartland Bluegrass Festival

UPDATE: SM Hanson Music has canceled this year's Heartland Bluegrass festival because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Rick Hanson, CEO and president of SM Hanson Music.

The Temple in Salina. Salina Post photo" />
The Temple in Salina. Salina Post photo

SM Hanson Music is bringing back bluegrass! A bluegrass festival, that is.

The SM Hanson Heartland Bluegrass Festival 2020 is scheduled for April 26. The event is scheduled at The Temple, 336 South Santa Fe Avenue, with doors opening at 10:30 a.m. This venue is handicap accessible.

"The SM Hanson Heartland Bluegrass Festival 2020 will include several bluegrass bands from around the state, some general playing and picking sessions, an Instrument Petting Zoo (for kids and adults), open mic stage time, a few instrument vendors, and local food trucks," said Rick Hanson, CEO and president of SM Hanson Music, Inc. "Attendees are encouraged to bring their instrument to join in the music community during the day."

Admission to the event will be by a suggested cash donation or canned food donation for the Salina Emergency Aid Food Bank, Hanson said.

"This will be our first bluegrass festival since the mid 1970s. We held several events in the '70s at Memorial Hall with bluegrass bands coming from Oklahoma and Arkansas," Hanson explained.

This year, however, the festival will be at The Temple.

"We will use the Grand Entrance on Santa Fe (big bronze doors)," Hanson noted. "The steps can be a place to begin picking if the weather is nice. The foyer and second floor space will provide adequate room for performances, picking areas, petting zoo and vendors."

The schedule of performers will be released closer to the date of the event, Hanson said.

The Kansas Bluegrass Association also plans to participate in the festival, he said.

Additionally, The Temple will have volunteers on hand to discuss the beautiful and historic facility that is being used for so many events.

"This will be a great opportunity for the public to see The Temple and listen/participate in the bluegrass music event," Hanson said.

According to Hanson, the festival is sponsored in part by Salina Arts & Humanities.