JOPLIN, Mo. —
Downtown Joplin has a new — but familiar — restaurant.
The former Arde’s Bistro, 407 S. Main St., reopened last week as M&M Bistro. It is operated by Mehrdad “Jef’’ Alvandi and his wife, Minoo. They are longtime friends of Arde Khaleghi, who closed the bistro and Arde’s Villa in Redings Mill last year when he decided to retire in Tulsa, Okla.
Alvandi, who operated a factory in Malaysia, brought his family to the United States to operate the Mediterranean restaurant and its banquet center.
“I liked this place the first time I saw it. It’s in the downtown,’’ he said. “People are saying they’re happy to see the lights on inside instead of the lights off.’’
Alvandi quickly recognized that his friend, Arde, had developed a workable business plan. Alvandi told me he has decided to continue “Arde’s idea. It’s the same as before.’’
Menu selections and pricing are virtually the same. He also has hired Arde’s skilled chef of 12 years, Juanito R. Magat.
But there are a couple of additions to the menu. One of them is a dessert — creme brulee, a contribution from Minoo. I’m a big fan of creme brulee. I was not disappointed.
Alvandi wants to be part of the revival downtown. In connection with the first Third Thursday two weeks ago, he opened the banquet center to seven artists who participated in the Art Walk. He plans to do that in the future and find other ways to engage with the community.
The bistro will be open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday.
When the bistro closed last year, it left a noticeable void in the mix of downtown eateries. Having it back the way it was means we didn’t give up something to get something else. We got back something we liked. That’s a good thing.
With two weeks to go until the April 15 tax filing deadline, the IRS wants everyone to know free tax return preparation is again available at a storefront inside the main entrance to Northpark Mall. This is the 15th year for the VITA site.
The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program offers free tax help generally to people who earn $51,000 or less.
Through April 15, the site will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The site will have extended hours on Thursday when it stays open to 7 p.m. No appointment is necessary.
Taxpayers need photo identification, valid Social Security cards for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents, and the individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) assignment letter for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents, if applicable.
Also needed will be birth dates for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents, wage and earnings statements from all employers, interest and dividend statements from banks, and a copy of last year’s federal and state returns, if available.
You also will need proof of bank or credit union routing numbers and account numbers for direct deposit.
Trained and certified community volunteers can help eligible taxpayers claim valuable credits and deductions, such as the child tax credit or the credit for the elderly. Many people may also get assistance in claiming the earned income tax credit, which is a significant financial boost to low- and moderate-income workers.
THE CAPRI SIGN
When the decision was made to tear down the Capri Motel, there was talk of preserving its iconic sign. But it wasn’t until the last month or so that a plan was devised to save it.
Brian Spencer, with the Spencer Car Co. and salvage yard on West Seventh Street, said he went to Countryside Flowers, south of the motel to buy some flowers on Valentine’s Day.
“I told the guy behind the counter that I would give anything to get that sign,’’ said Spencer. “He told me that a guy who worked for the company that bought the motel had just been in the flower shop 15 minutes before. He said the guy was trying to find someone to preserve the sign. I got his number and now I’ve got the sign.’’
The sign is being taken down in pieces. Each piece is being numbered to eventually resurrect the sign on Spencer’s property along West Seventh Street.
If you have news about something happening on Range Line Road or Main Street, dial 417-623-3480, ext. 7250; or send an email to email@example.com; or send a fax to Wally Kennedy at 417-623-8598.
JOPLIN, Mo. —
Downtown Joplin has a new — but familiar — restaurant.
- Local News
Registration open for Joplin Family Y’s Chilly 5K Challenge
Participants are being sought for the fourth annual Chilly 5K Challenge, a key fundraiser for the Joplin Family YMCA. The 3.1-mile race will begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 1. Registration is available at the YMCA’s downtown and south locations or online at joplinfamilyy.org; the fee is $25. Race-day registration will be available from 9 to 10:30 a.m. only at the south branch, 3404 W. McIntosh Circle Drive.
Commencement exercises set for MSSU, PSU, Crowder College
Commencement ceremonies have been set for students who will graduate this month from local colleges and universities.
Ozone group to focus on issue awareness
The development of a voluntary clean air action plan for the Four-State Area was discussed at length Tuesday by members of a regional group that met at Joplin’s City Hall. The group was formed in response to air monitoring that shows the Joplin area has, in recent years, exceeded federal standards for ground-level ozone.
Mike Pound: Group honors Carver’s commitment to education
Perspective can be a great thing. On Tuesday, most area schools were closed because of the snow, and that was more than likely a good thing. The last thing anyone wants is to have thousands of kids trying to make it to school on streets and roads packed with ice and snow.
Baseball proposal draws support of city staff
Advisers to the Joplin City Council recommended Monday night that the council go forward with a proposal to bring a professional baseball team to Joplin. The El Paso (Texas) Diablos, an independent professional team, have proposed moving to Joplin because a Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres is moving into El Paso.
Carthage man’s death deemed suspicious
An 87-year-old man whose body was discovered inside his home Monday night may have been a victim of foul play, according to Carthage police. A neighbor checking on the well-being of Raymond R. Ritchhart made the discovery and called 911 at 6:04 p.m. The neighbor thought Ritchhart might have fallen.
Hundreds brave cold as train makes holiday stop in Joplin
Santas and trains were the attractions, and there were plenty of both on Tuesday when Kansas City Southern’s Holiday Express stopped in Joplin. There was THE Santa, of course, along with train cars decorated for Christmas and filled with Santas, dolls and toys.
Parade postponed because of safety concerns
The slick condition of sidewalks and side streets after an overnight snowfall was the deciding factor leading to the postponement of the annual Joplin Christmas parade on Tuesday. It may be the first time that the Joplin Jaycees — longtime parade sponsors — have had to call off a parade because of weather conditions, said Casey Starnes, Jaycees president and chairman of the parade committee.
Joplin City Council moving forward with baseball deal
Drafting an agreement that would bring professional baseball to Joplin won City Council authorization at a special meeting Monday night. The council voted to have the city staff write a formal agreement defining the terms of a deal toward relocating the El Paso (Texas) Diablos to Joplin. That agreement may be presented as soon as next Monday if the city’s legal staff can finish it that soon, according to the discussion.
Medical community tradition: Two Haitian women receive surgical gifts
Beatrice Massier and Esther Julnide lined up their walkers Monday afternoon for a footrace of sorts. For these Haitian women, it would be one of the first times they would walk without a limp and without pain. Last week, they both received new right hips in surgeries performed at Premier Surgical Institute in Galena.
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