Monday, April 16, 2012
At least four businesses near Kellogg and Greenwich in East Wichita sustained serious damage from Saturday's tornado.
Much of the roof at the back of Club Rodeo was torn apart while the business was open. About 150 patrons and 26 animals amazingly were not injured.
General Manager Eric Ragain says he stopped everything and ordered everyone to the bathrooms just before the roof started peeling away.
"I just went in and told them I know it's a bathroom floor, guys, but get down and cover your head. This is our lives. And they all dropped and it was pretty amazing to me because I didn't think I had that much authority," Ragain said with a chuckle.
Neighboring East Side Homes had seven show homes destroyed. Workers were busy dismantling it Monday.
"Half of a unit was flipped on it's roof," said General Manager Ryan Andes. "We really don't have any choice but to demolish it and put it in the waste containers."
Acorss Kellogg, a staple of Kansas fun was set up in a church parking lot. Co-owner Chris Flattery believes the wind had to be more than 130 miles-per-hour when the giant ferris wheel toppled to the ground.
"It's kinda like your worst nightmare," Flattery said, "because this is our signature piece. It's 65 feet high and has signs advertising and the whole bit."
Another smaller ride was demolished by the ferris wheel falling on top of it.
And at the Scholfield luxury dealership, Client Care Manager Dan Watkins says every single car on the north side of the show lot was damaged by flying debris. Even a car inside the showroom was damaged.
"One of the sections of our glass and middle frame actually fell in and hit our $126,000 Porsche 911 Carerra," Watkins said. "It's a heartbreaker because it's such a beautiful car."
But like all of the other business managers nearby, Watkins is just thankful that nobody was hurt.