There are a number of rumors circulating which have been negatively impacting our business in Arkansas City. We’d like to take a moment to address them.
The first rumor, that we raised booth rent in the Winfield mall, is untrue. The business is currently leased. While it is being leased, the lessee is free to run it according to the lessee’s own business model. We do not have any control over booth prices set in Winfield under the new management. We did not raise prices prior to leasing, nor did we tell anyone that prices needed to be raised. We left a standardized price list that did not account for the price breaks that we made for our vendors, but Quail had those breaks in the system. If any booth rent was raised in Winfield, it was not the doing of anyone associated with Cowley Antique Mall, nor at our request.
The second rumor deals with how we run this business. We will say one thing in regards to this. The individual complaining about it – she didn’t complain when we gave her a discount because she couldn’t afford booth rent. When she still couldn’t afford booth rent and we moved her to commission only, she still wasn’t complaining. She had nothing but nice things to say to us. We’ll leave it at that.
The third rumor deals with having a cat in a building where we sell food. Our kitchen is kept clean. The Kansas food inspector saw the cat, walked over, spoke to her and stroked her fur. He didn’t say anything about it. The reason he said nothing is because no cat hair was found in food prep or storage areas. The cat is kept out of those areas. If the food inspector for the State of Kansas has no issue, then those spreading this malicious rumor have no ground to stand on.
The fourth rumor, more of an issue, deals with people complaining about the owner’s daughters working in the Antique Mall. The only thing we are going to say to address this, is: They are learning valuable life skills, putting math to practice, gaining experience and making money. Most people consider such things to be positive, and character building.
The fifth, and possibly most ridiculous rumor, is that the owner intends to sell the Arkansas City Mall and then kick the lessee out of the Winfield Mall to take it over. While we are interested in selling or leasing the Ark City Antique Mall (only to someone that intends to keep the business running), we assure you, we have no plans to kick out the Winfield lessee and resume our own operations there. A lease is a legally binding contract, and unless the lessee breaks the contract, defaults on the contract, or does something that endangers the business, we have no right whatsoever, to take over and remove the lessee.
Lastly, after having spoken with multiple vendors and customers, We would like to state that we know full well where the rumors are coming from. We know the individual(s) names. We have reviewed camera footage, we have witnesses, and are aware of who is saying things, and what they are saying. We ask you, kindly, to stop. The owner has stated that if they continue, he will take legal action against the individual(s) responsible, for defamation of character, slander, and damages related to business and loss of income.
Please, don’t help propagate these rumors. They are damaging our Arkansas City business. Rumors are a dangerous game, and they don’t just hurt our business, they hurt our vendors. Think before you speak. If you hear any rumors, please come to us and ask us about it. We’d like to know what is being spread, where you heard it, and we’d like to be given the opportunity to give you the facts related to the matter.