Houston-based NewQuest Properties broke ground last week on the 143-acre Cottonwood Creek Market, a development on the east side of Interstate 35 between Flying J and Central Texas Marketplace.

A 14-screen Cinemark movie theater, a bowling alley and a “national retailer in golf entertainment,” appear on the NewQuest menu for the development, scheduled to open next spring.

Reached by phone, Steve Alvis, managing partner of the NewQuest commercial real estate firm, said his relationship with Plano-based Cinemark goes back 27 years. The entertainment powerhouse has the means and will to follow through with its plans. It operates 342 cinemas with 4,596 screens in 41 states in addition to 205 theaters with 1,455 screens in Latin America, according to a press release.

“I built the first Cinemark property with all-stadium seating, on I-10 in Jacinto City,” Alvis said, referring to the Harris County city east of Houston.

NewQuest is negotiating “final terms for the class A space in NewQuest’s newest master-planned, mixed-use project,” according to the press release.

The interested parties include a national company poised to place a 20-lane bowling venue at Cottonwood Creek Market, and the firm has “reached terms with a national retailer in golf entertainment,” Alvis said. He declined to name names, but described the prospect as “the best in the business,” adding, “Everybody knows who it is.”

That would be Dallas-based TopGolf. It provides a climate-controlled environment for whacking golf balls down a manicured course while enjoying food and liquid refreshments delivered by servers. Strategically placed TV screens allow for viewing other sports between whacks.

Personally speaking, an afternoon at TopGolf Fort Worth with family and friends was great fun, and no one in the group was a ringer. It became obvious, though, that many paying customers were serious golfers honing their game while staying dry as misting rain fell on the roof.

TopGolf’s site listing would indicate a preference for larger metropolitan areas. Nothing at all against hometown Waco, but how did it make the cut?

“It’s a stellar city,” Alvis replied. “It was high on the list.”

Asked if the development envisions a retail component, Alvis said it most assuredly does.

“Retailers all over the country are talking about Waco,” he said.

Negotiations also are alive with a family-dining prospect.

The bottom line is that Cinemark and NewQuest are sold on Waco, the location they have chosen and the community at large, Alvis said.

“Waco has needed an entertainment hub for quite a while,” Alvis is quoted as saying in the press release. “This venue will be an important cornerstone for the city and its growing number of tourists.”

“In the past nine years, the Waco population has spiked 27% within a 3-mile radius of NewQuest’s Cottonwood Creek Market,” according to the press release.

NewQuest Properties has 40 brokers, owns a $2.2-billion portfolio with properties in Texas and Louisiana, and provides leasing services for more than 12 million square feet of commercial space, much of it developed or redeveloped, the press release states.

Boss Club at farmers market

Waco Downtown Farmers Market customers who missed their chance last week will have another on Saturday to buy goodies prepared by the Boss Club summer entrepreneurship program for area kids ages 7 to 14.

Offerings will include homemade dog treats, bath bombs and gourmet cake pops.

The farmers market is held across Washington Avenue from the McLennan County Courthouse near Fifth Street. Boss Club signed up 125 kids from 36 Waco-area schools to participate in its summer program that will last through Aug. 3, according to a press release from the club.

Free ice cream delivery

H-E-B is getting into the swing of National Ice Cream Day on Sunday, offering free delivery of its Creamy Creations products.

Favor, the Texas-based grocery delivery company which H-E-B bought last year, is offering the sweet deal to residents in Waco, Killeen and Temple, according to a press release. Consumers who use the Favor app or link up with favordelivery.com, promo code ICECREAMDAY, will receive a free pint delivered to their door between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday.

Users should also tap on the “National Ice Cream Day” banner.

The ice cream is free, but customers must tip the delivery people $2, according to the press release, which emphasizes the runners keep it all.

Available flavors include 1905 vanilla, strawberry, Mexican hot chocolate and Texas starry night, and there is a limit of one pint per customer.

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