Advertisement

Previous poll Next poll

How often would you eat at Olive Garden if they opened one in Lawrence?

Response Percent Votes
Often
 
30% 770
Sometimes
 
27% 705
Never
 
24% 609
Rarely
 
17% 436
Total 2520

Comments

LJ Whirled 2 years, 9 months ago

I will never darken the door of any restaurant or store which charges the "double-secret-sales-tax-that's-not-really-even-a-sales-tax-but-a-kickback-to-the-developer". Never, ever, ever. Stop doing it. It hurts Lawrence.

0

Kris_H 2 years, 10 months ago

Too many remarks to read/respond, but I say "never." I'm in Topeka and there's already one here I never go to.

I've been trying to avoid ALL chains and eat at local places instead. Yes, the chains have hired local people, but the profits still go back to the corporation. I'd rather my money go to someone who lives where they earned it.

0

BigAl 2 years, 10 months ago

I must be an idiot. I like Olive Garden and Red Lobster. Actually, I REALLY like Red Lobster. I like a good greasy cheesburger from the Yacht Club too. I guess I just don't know fine dining. While some of you are fighting this out, I will be having a cold beer and some hot wings from BWW. But, I am sure BWW is terrible also.

0

Richard Heckler 2 years, 10 months ago

The tax incentives should come from the property owners in order to protect taxpayers from reckless tax dollar decisions thus coming up on the losing end.

If the property owners feel so strongly about this real estate deal they should have no problem making it work. Incentives must come from property owners and real estate industry bank accounts.

0

hotrod383 2 years, 10 months ago

i have lived in lawrence all my life, and have watched while a few people in the city government dictate what should be here, such as business, eating establishments, etc. what about the citizens of lawrence, no say? when will lawrence be able to have something besides sports bars and high priced places like on mass street ? It is not right that business owners be allowed to say what can come to lawrence because they may lose a dollar. what about the jobs created for the people? why should we have to go to ottawa to work for a good wage or travel to topeka or kc to get something besides fast food or dried out bbg! that lot on south iowa has been vacant for years. an olive garden? that would be awesome. come on city fathers, when are you going to give the public something back besides disappointment.

0

hotrod383 2 years, 10 months ago

i have lived in lawrence all my life, and have watched while a few people in the city government dictate what should be here, such as business, eating establishments, etc. what about the citizens of lawrence, no say? when will lawrence be able to have something besides sports bars and high priced places like on mass street ? It is not right that business owners be allowed to say what can come to lawrence because they may lose a dollar. what about the jobs created for the people? why should we have to go to ottawa to work for a good wage or travel to topeka or kc to get something besides fast food or dried out bbg! that lot on south iowa has been vacant for years. an olive garden? that would be awesome. come on city fathers, when are you going to give the public something back besides disappointment.

0

hotrod383 2 years, 10 months ago

i have lived in lawrence all my life, and have watched while a few people in the city government dictate what should be here, such as business, eating establishments, etc. what about the citizens of lawrence, no say? when will lawrence be able to have something besides sports bars and high priced places like on mass street ? It is not right that business owners be allowed to say what can come to lawrence because they may lose a dollar. what about the jobs created for the people? why should we have to go to ottawa to work for a good wage or travel to topeka or kc to get something besides fast food or dried out bbg! that lot on south iowa has been vacant for years. an olive garden? that would be awesome. come on city fathers, when are you going to give the public something back besides disappointment.

0

gl0ck0wn3r 2 years, 10 months ago

lol seriously? The heat must be getting to you while you are out mowing lawns and killing the environment.

0

commuter 2 years, 10 months ago

Merrill - please buy the property & give it to OG. oh wait that would mean YOU would have to spend YOUR money, it is too bad YOU are not that thirty with the spending on YOUR pet projects.

0

Richard Heckler 2 years, 10 months ago

The tax incentives should come from the property owners:

  1. lease agreement @ $500.00 per month

  2. Sell the property for $10,000

  3. Pay the taxes for them

  4. give them the property

Or perhaps the real estate industry wants to pay the taxes for them.

NO TAX INCENTIVES from local property owners and certainly NO TAX DOLLAR help from USD 497.

0

Stain 2 years, 10 months ago

No abatement.

They'll do fine here, and Lawrence doesn't lack good restaurants so there's no reason for them to demand this.

0

average 2 years, 10 months ago

"Yet, he does not want Olive Garden to open a restaurant in Lawrence. "

When the f did he say that?

No, really. When? Oh, that's right, he didn't. Damn it, you've made me white-knight Bob flipping Schumm. And I'd eat in an Olive Garden long before I stepped back in the Smokehouse.

He's never said he doesn't want an Olive Garden. He's said he's not going to give them (or, more precisely, a land development speculator) tax breaks that he himself doesn't get. That's about a 'duh' a decision as there can be.

0

Kasha 2 years, 10 months ago

Bob Schumm says he is all for improving attendance and attracting new businesses downtown, no doubt hoping to capture more customers at his restaurant -- whatever the name and location of that is. Yet, he does not want Olive Garden to open a restaurant in Lawrence. From the results of LJ-W poll, he must have been campaigning AGAINST an Olive Garden Restaurant just as he was campaigning FOR his own election to the Ciry Commission as late as 5:00 p.m. in AT LEAST ONE polling place in Lawrence. My personal survey shows an overwhelming preference for not only Olive Garden but Red Lobster to open restaurants here. And these people would as soon these new restaurants be south of 23rd on Iowa. They have no desire to compete with limited or no parking and drunk college kids who dominate downtown. I thought our City Commissioners were supposed to vote in favor of what is best (in their opinion) for Lawrence, and not to push for their individual agendas.

0

Richard Heckler 2 years, 10 months ago

68% of the vote is not showing a great deal of support.

The restaurant business in Lawrence is a stiff challenge no question about it.

The new residential growth gives a fraudulent appearance. There are a lot of empty bedrooms and homes in Lawrence,Kansas which will not fill up when KU students come back in the fall nor on account of a new olive garden.

This morning I read that 11 million homeowners are on the edge of losing their homes owing more than they can sell for. According to the article that represents 50 million people.

Lawrence Kansas is consistently on the low end of the pay scale. And 12,000 - 15,000 commute to work.

0

wildcatfn 2 years, 10 months ago

If the local restaurants were high quality food and service at a fair price point they wouldn't need to worry. Unfortunately, most of Lawrence's affordable restaurants suffer from a college-town mindset: quick food, usually below-average to poor quality, and lousy service.....When even teenage kids can tell the difference between quality at a KFC or BBQ in Lawrence or elsewhere, that's pretty bad. The other day my family went to Set-em-up-Jacks: ordered 2 beef taco salads - both came out with cold meat; I ordered tomato on my sandwich - it was forgotten; had to ask for silverware twice; pop was flat in all our glasses; manager thought he was being impressive by bringing out the new taco salads himself - they forgot the sauce....typical quality and service in most Lawrence places, which is why we almost never eat out in Lawrence anymore....An Olive Garden, if it's up to national chain quality standards, would be a welcome addition. Oh - the KFC was so greasy it gave all of us indigestion or worse....

0

gl0ck0wn3r 2 years, 10 months ago

The smug cloud here is pretty thick. I love whenever these topics is discussed because it doesn't take long for the "I don't eat in chain restaurant" snobs to come out of the woodwork. Yes, I'm sure your locally sourced, free range veggie burger with soy aioli is quite the treat - but not everyone eats like you and the restaurant market in Lawrence should (ideally) cater to the widest range of tastes possible.

Olive Garden is what it is and anyone who pretends it is fine dining - or judges it by those standards - is misinformed. Olive Garden is inexpensive Italian-ish dining. It will do well in Lawrence with people looking for inexpensive pasta (i.e. students, families). Do you people really think that an Olive Garden will cannibalize market share from Paisano's or Tellers? Really? Are you the same people who think that Wal-Mart is competition for local clothing stores? The pricing points are so drastically different that I doubt Olive Garden will have any effect on those two restaurants. Besides, food snobs, Paisano's and Tellers are pretty mediocre...

0

Irenaku 2 years, 10 months ago

My kid and I jokingly call Pachamamma's the "rich white people's restaraunt", given that every time we walk past, all we see are rich white people who looked overly-hygenic and tailored like they stepped out of a Ralph Lauren ad. I don't think I could afford to change my mind in that joint. Sadly, however, my parents came to town to visit and were walking downtown with us, and I heard my dad say to my mom as we walked past Pach: "honey, isn't that the place where we had dinner last time we were in town?" Aggghhh!

0

Multidisciplinary 2 years, 10 months ago

TopJayhawk (anonymous) replies… Red Lobster and OG are owned by the same company... And both serve premade meals out of bags.. All they do is nuke it up on the premises. Not bad for frozen food, but would rather have it made fresh if that is what I am paying for.

Johnny Carinno's is far better for chain food.

So does Applebee's. Most everything comes prebagged, individual servings. Salads, entrees...

0

scopi_guy 2 years, 10 months ago

Many people would eat a cat turd if it were deep fat fried, wrapped in bacon, or served with a side of ranch dressing. The thing is...do you really want to leave your car unattended for a couple of hours in a parking lot in that area?

0

nonracist 2 years, 10 months ago

If they get tax break, will never go there.

0

Laura Wilson 2 years, 10 months ago

Boy are we a bunch of snobs! Have any of you considered that Olive Garden is cheaper than Tellers or Genoveses or even Paisanos? Not everyone can afford to eat at Pachamamas once a month! But most people can afford to eat at Applebees or Olive Garden.

I love the wide variety in both food and prices we have here in Lawrence and have eaten at restaurants of all kinds. I've never had a bad meal at Olive Garden. Is it "authentic" Italian? Well, no. Neither is most of the Italian at any of the other restaurants we have here, but it's not bad food.

0

vicblthndr 2 years, 10 months ago

We need a DENNY'S here, not another so-so eating place.

0

SpeedRacer 2 years, 10 months ago

Merchants on the City Commission don't like competition.

0

BABBOY 2 years, 10 months ago

Wow, Lawrence is getting more and more like Topeka every day.

Soon, you will have a Wanamaker Drive.......

I am from Topeka. My biggest beef with my old home town was its love for franchise food. At least they upgraded from Hardees to Texas Roadhouse (which still sucks) as being their favorite places to eat......As someone who grew up there, that place is the cheapest place on the planet --- although Wichita is not much better...... (Wichita is Topeka on Steroids)

The one thing I like about Lawrence -- which almost overcomes all the snobs I resist beating up -- is all the nice local places to eat....

The only place in this area close to being civilized is the Kansas CIty area.....(which I include Lawrence and Topeka as fringe areas associated with it)

0

Liberty275 2 years, 10 months ago

Idiots. Its 30 service industry jobs your neighbors need to pay their mortgages. Who cares if the food is five star?

0

The_Original_Bob 2 years, 10 months ago

"Anthony Bourdain on Olive Garden: "That. Is. Not. Italian. Food. It may sound Italian, but so does chlamydia. That's not any good, either." kawryan

Anthony Bourdain is my co-pilot. I have never done oceans of cociane or shoved a live Japanese blowfish in a customer's mouth, but Tony is enteraining. In February, when is show is constantly on re-runs, I shall watcht it. It is just nice out this time of year and I can't keep up.

0

kawryan 2 years, 10 months ago

Anthony Bourdain on Olive Garden: "That. Is. Not. Italian. Food. It may sound Italian, but so does chlamydia. That's not any good, either."

It's crap.

Fine, build it. I'm sure it will be busy as hell but so is Famous Dave's. Hereford House had WAY better food for $3-5 more but people would rather fill a parking lot to eat swill than actually eat good food in this town.

0

Pywacket 2 years, 10 months ago

The only time I would go there is if the Grands were arranging a family get-together and invited us. Their genertion seems to love the place. I'm not necessarily down on all chains (gimme some Chipotle's any time), but look up "bland" in the dictionary and you'll find a photo of an Olive Garden.

A Greek friend just taught me to make stuffed grape leaves like her Grandma makes back home. Who needs chain fake Italian when you can have all the delectable Greek dolmas you can eat right in your own kitchen?

0

LadyJ 2 years, 10 months ago

My daughter and I loved going to Sweet Tomatoes in Overland Park. It's been years though since we've been there.

0

Multidisciplinary 2 years, 10 months ago

Somebody, quick!!! kansasplains1's blood B&G content is too low.

0

Lawrence Morgan 2 years, 10 months ago

A lot of the places suggested by the commenters have large portions of fat in their foods, and it's not olive oil either. They also make fun without any basis whatsoever, which is the case in so many Journal World postings. I would like to see postings directed to the topic of the article. It seems to me that many of these people just want to see themselves in print. But to my point of view, that only makes them more ridiculous. Why not use real names, so that people can't hid behind lack of originality?

0

The_Original_Bob 2 years, 10 months ago

Shoot. Didn't realize there was a poll as well as the article. reposted from the article....

Never. If I wanted bland, boring Italian food, I'd just goto Fazzios. And if people are in favor of tax breaks to eat bread sticks, well, then, um, this nation may be a little more messed up than I have ignored.

0

HRCJJ 2 years, 10 months ago

I make better "Italian" food at home.

0

Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 years, 10 months ago

Moot question. The city manager is instructing the clueless, lame, gutless commissioners to squelch this one, it might compete with Schumm's greasy spoon in Beautiful Downtown Lawrence. Never gonna happen, nothing good ever gets past our (at large elected) city kommission.

0

witchfindergeneral 2 years, 10 months ago

Never. I had the extreme misfortune of eating at an Olive Garden a few years ago--the food was cold, the decor was tacky, and the wine selection was pitiful. I don't understand why anyone would eat at a large chain when local restaurants offer better, and often cheaper, specialty food.

0

Kirk Larson 2 years, 10 months ago

It'll make it easier to get a table at Paisanos'

0

cmmcphee 2 years, 10 months ago

I would rather have red lobster come to town.

0

rockchalker52 2 years, 10 months ago

The only OG I've ever frequented is the one near 95th & Metcalf in Overland Park. I've dined there maybe a half dozen times in the last ten years. I always had a nice time & enjoyed the food. I get a chuckle out of the folks who turn up their collective nose at the supposedly sub-par offerings. It doesn't matter if it's authentic or not. It tastes good.

I don't remember this sort of backlash when On The Border showed up. Their food tastes good, too, but it's probably not real high in authenticity either.

Not every meal has to be a culinary orgasm, folks.

0

lwctown 2 years, 10 months ago

How about they put in a McMinnamans in the Masonic Hall on Mass.....

0

equalaccessprivacy 2 years, 10 months ago

Olive Garden has/had a franchise in The Underground of Wescoe Hall. It seems popular.

0

melott 2 years, 10 months ago

Probably not, unless they get city welfare. In that case, definitely not.

0

Jeteras 2 years, 10 months ago

screw a bunch of Italian foods,, Bring that OKLAHOMA JOES over here!!! smothered ribs served on newspaper mmmmmmmmm and New Orleans Original Daiquiris in the back

0

Eride 2 years, 10 months ago

Olive Garden is gross. Such poor quality. Not even remotely real Italian food... I'd rather eat at that Italian place in the gas station then spend a dime at an Olive Garden.

0

nugget 2 years, 10 months ago

Olive Garden. A little taste of Italy in Lawrence...

Not really. Just a taste of corporate marketing for people that would like to THINK it's Italian. If you like Applebee's, you'll LOVE Olive Garden.

Sorry, they won't be getting a nickel of my money. Plenty of great locally owned places to frequent.

0

Melanie Birge 2 years, 10 months ago

Oh plz bring it in! It will help create new jobs as well!

0

ferrislives 2 years, 10 months ago

If they brought a Churches Chicken or a Chick-fil-A, I'd be thrilled.

0

dogsandcats 2 years, 10 months ago

I can make my own Italian food that is much better than Olive Garden's.

0

Keith 2 years, 10 months ago

If they don't get their sneaky tax, maybe. If they get their sneaky tax, never.

0

oneeye_wilbur 2 years, 10 months ago

Until they close. If one were built west of Iowa, most likely never. Even the east side of town can't land a Popeyes Chicken.

Face it, Lawrence won't ever get much in the way of fine dining.

If Olive Garden is the closest, it is part of the C.Y.A.D. operation of which the Chamber is behind.

0

5thgeneration 2 years, 10 months ago

I wouldn't set a foot in it.

I try to avoid corporate chain restaurants.

0

WaxAndWane 2 years, 10 months ago

"Whenever our family comes to visit from Italy, we take them to The Olive Garden!" (and the Italian relatives then vow never to come back to America). - "It's real Italian food at it's best!" (yeah, fried cheese apps and a dessert called chocolate lasagna. Just like Grandma Porcelli used to make!)

0

none2 2 years, 10 months ago

Is Macaroni Grill any better?

0

Clark Coan 2 years, 10 months ago

Can't expect much from corporate chains.

0

bootlegger 2 years, 10 months ago

I agree we need a chicken house.........how about Strouds????

0

SynjynSmythe 2 years, 10 months ago

Olive Garden in Topeka is OK. However, with Paisano's in Lawrence, do we really need Olive Garden essentially across the street??? What we really need here is some outstanding fried chicken restaurants like they have in southeast Kansas!! Once you've eaten that, KFC just ain't makin' it anymore!!!

0

To Sides 2 years, 10 months ago

Olive Garden's quality is hit and miss. I haven't been to one in a couple of years because of this.

0

Multidisciplinary 2 years, 10 months ago

Italian food. Not my cup o tea. Put in a barbeque with a drive thru. Meats on sticks.

0

KansasBard 2 years, 10 months ago

I'd rather get a Popeye's Fried Chicken in town.

0

Ron Holzwarth 2 years, 10 months ago

The lunch salad and soup special is pretty good - sometimes. It's rather hit and miss, though. Sometimes it's really good.

0

jackbinkelman 2 years, 10 months ago

Iceberg lettuce and white bread.. Mmmmmm.. Bland-o-rama!

0

ksjayhawk74 2 years, 10 months ago

I really like the idea of an Olive Garden in Lawrence. The Masonic Temple on Mass. St would make a great location for one.

0

scopi_guy 2 years, 10 months ago

I can buy sauce in a jar at the grocery.

0

MISTERTibbs 2 years, 10 months ago

Depends on if they get the abatement they are asking for. If they do - Never, if not sometimes.

0

Commenting has been disabled for this item.