Pretty in Pink Flamingo Boutique, a creation of 20-year-old Savannah May, has opened at 611 Washington Ave., in the Curry Office Supply building that May’s father, Honda and Hyundai car dealer Greg May, has spent $1.5 million renovating.

Savannah and a pink flamingo named Pip are welcoming guests to the shop, which expands on her successful online presence. Using her flair for fashion, honed by her experience as a model, Savannah sells primarily women’s apparel, as well as baby clothes and apparel targeting “tweens.”

“We’re calling it a unique chic boutique,” said Greg May, who bought the iconic building from Tracy and Jeanne Maughan in November for $950,000, envisioning a locale where the budding entrepreneur could spread her wings.

Tracy Maughan, who moved to Waco from Utah and helped launch Buzzard Billy’s Armadillo Bar and Grill-O years ago, later to become Buzzard Billy’s Swamp Shack, had bought the Curry building as an investment.

Crews he hired began stripping away the metal veneer and stucco that had hidden the building’s original exterior, and he went public with plans to install a new roof, replace or restore windows, gut the place down to the bare walls and sandblast the brick in some areas, the Tribune-Herald reported in 2013.

The Mays emerged as buyers last year and hired Pearson Construction to carry out their vision. Crews completed the 3,700-square-foot first floor, and Savannah May tossed out the welcome mat Tuesday. Now they will tackle the second floor, where Greg May hopes to unveil a 2,500-square-foot bar called Z’s at The Curry, giving a nod to the structure’s namesake and wife Suzanna May, whom he calls Zanna.

“I’m shooting for an opening in October or November,” Greg May said.

He said he is aiming for a “quiet, quaint, upscale” establishment where patrons can unwind in a comfortable setting.

The bar will serve appetizers, but not meals, and will accommodate close to 200 people once crews double the size of an outdoor patio.

Curry Office Supply was founded by H.S. “Ted” Curry and his wife, Roberta, in 1939. It was relocated to Washington Avenue, near the McLennan County Courthouse, in 1946. It survived the tornado that ravaged downtown in 1953, its 18-inch-thick walls serving as buffers, and two fires in 1980.

Curry, now Curry Printing Systems, moved to Topeka Drive in 2005.

Downtown roundup

Elsewhere downtown, progress is being made on several fronts.

  • David Gorham, owner of the Honky Tonk Kid BBQ food truck near Mary Avenue and University Parks Drive, said Friday work is set to start on a 1,000-square-foot space he is leasing nearby in a development completed earlier this year. He is hoping to open late next month or early October. Work on his space was delayed as Gorham worked with city inspectors on plumbing and placement of smokers and an emergency exit, he said.
  • A building permit has been issued for remodeling at 315 S. University Parks Drive, in the same development Honky Tonk Kid is moving into, to accommodate a J-Petal restaurant. The chain’s website says it specializes in “Japanese crepe and Thai ice cream.”
  • Another tenant in the same development, Rush Cycle, an exercise club featuring stationary bicycles, held its grand opening Saturday at 300 S. Second St. It opened for business July 2. “We have 43 bikes and have been at full capacity just about every class this past month,” owner Chris Goss said. “We have seven instructors who have been training for six weeks, and they will start teaching class at our grand opening.”
  • Wizard Hat Smoke Shop has secured a building permit to renovate space at 707 Austin Ave. A sign posted at that address says the shop will sell pipes, cigars, wraps, E-cigarettes and kratom. The Food and Drug Administration lists kratom as an “herbal supplement,” and the Drug Enforcement Administration lists as an unregulated “drug of concern.” A handful of states have banned kratom, but its sale is allowed in Texas.

Economic forecast

A Central Texas Economic Forecast is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday at Hotel Indigo Waco, 211 Clay Ave. downtown.

Speakers will include Baylor University economist Tom Kelly and Kris Collins, senior vice president for economic development at the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce, according to information provided by the local chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America, a co-sponsor.

The public is invited, Associated General Contractors spokesman K. Paul Holt said. Members of the group and the Heart of Texas Chapter of the Construction Financial Management Association pay $30 to attend, while non-members pay $35.

Holt will discuss the work of both groups from 10 to 11:15 a.m. Lunch, networking and the program will last until 1 p.m.

Boise visit

Ever been to Boise, Idaho? The Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce believes it would make a worthwhile destination for local business leaders.

The chamber has chosen Boise for its next intercity visit in which it meets with community leaders to talk about economic development.

The visit is scheduled Sept. 12-14, and registration is due by Aug. 22.

Cost to take part in the trip is $1,200, not including air fare, and $750 for spouses. In recent years, Boise and the so-called Boise Valley has been included in lists by Expedia, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report that rank best places to live in the United States, top cities for young professionals, fastest growing cities and one of North America’s “coolest downtowns,” according to information provided by the chamber.

For more information, contact Waco chamber vice president Linda Beasley at 757-5601 or beasley@wacochamber.com.

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