Spotlight on an Innovative Business

The Spotlight on a Innovative Business is a monthly feature focusing on businesses doing extraordinary things during difficult times. The spotlight is presented in collaboration with Miami County Economic Development, Louisburg Chamber or Commerce, Osawatomie Chamber of Commerce, Paola Chamber of Commerce and Spring Hill Chamber of Commerce. Businesses featured in the Innovative Business Spotlight are nominated by their local chamber of commerce with nominations rotating among communities.

  1. June 2021 - The Drive-In at Midway
  2. May 2021 - ASKC Powell Observatory
  3. April 2021 - Price Chopper
  4. Feb. 2021 - Wright Way Homes
  5. Jan. 2021 - KRS Corporation

The Drive-In at Midway2The Drive-In at Midway, located on 327th Street “midway” between Osawatomie and Paola, is a gem for the region. Boasting its title as one of a few drive-ins left in the state, the Drive-In has been a memory-maker for generations of movie-goers.

The new owners, Michael and Heather Wood, were excited to open for the 2021 season after remaining closed in 2020. They took advantage of the down time last year to make improvements to the property and even underwent a rezoning process to allow different activities at the site. 

In fact, the Drive-In at Midway is no longer just the “movie” spot in Miami County, they are hosting a multitude of different events from swap meets to special “show and sell” events accompanied by live bands and food trucks. Swap meets occur each Saturday morning, weather permitting. There is a $15 vendor fee and $2 fee for patrons.  The Woods family has proven to be resilient and flexible working with the vendors and attendees to adjust events based on weather and local expectations.

They are continuing to make improvements to the property and are open to new opportunities such as private events. As an example, they have expanded the show season for 2021 opening in April and planning to remain open well into the fall rather than closing at Labor Day.

Make sure you’ve got The Drive-In at Midway’s Tow and Go Show event on your calendar for June 19-20. This event will welcomes anyone wanting to sell or buy boats, RVs, trailers, and related gear in a forum to haggle for the best bargain. Dealers are welcome to attend this event as well. There will be a live band, food trucks and vendors.

The Drive-In at MidwayYou can find information on their upcoming movies on the marquee out front as well as on Facebook at The Drive-In at Midway – Paola/Osawatomie. Tickets are $10 for adults and $3 for children. Drive-In gates open at 7 p.m., and the first movie will begin at dark. Be sure to “Like” the new page on Facebook and show support!

  1. Dec. 2020 - Seats Inc.
  2. Nov. 2020 - One Way Deliveries
  3. Oct. 2020 - On Point Catering
  4. Sept. 2020 - Social: Managed.
  5. August 2020 - BlackHawk Apartments
  6. July 2020 - Be Well Spa
  7. .. 

Seats Incorporated brings innovation to Spring Hill with their outside-the-box thinking and care for their employees.

Seats Inc. is a seating manufacturer that provides diverse options to a wide variety of applications including industrial trucks, over-the-highway semi-tractors, off-highway equipment, earth moving equipment, military and emergency vehicles. 

Already established in Wisconsin, Seats Inc. expanded their innovative practices to Spring Hill in 2018. They are now one of the largest seat manufacturers in the United States. The company Seats Photo 2utilizes highly advanced polyurethane foam-making machines as well as powder-coating lines, robotic welding stations and built-in communication stations help train employees in their assembly line.

Seats Inc. has also come up with some creative ways to keep their 200 employees happy. Employee satisfaction surveys are conducted frequently in addition to wage increases. They also offer onsite chiropractic services and hope to offer full-service medical clinics, similar to those in their home plant in Reedsburg, Wisconsin. Of course, all work and no play would make for a dull workplace, so Seats Inc. makes sure to inject some fun into their employees’ day.

“There’s a lot of quirky things [Halloween costume and ugly sweater contests] that we’re trying to do to create that family culture that we have up in Wisconsin and trying to incorporate that here,” Tim Stevens, general manager, said. “Seats prides itself on growing people from coming in and working on the shop floor and going to higher levels.” 

In addition to manufacturing seats and caring for their employees, the company also thought outside the box to come up with creative partnerships within the community. Fastenal, a supplier of industrial goods, leases a space inside the facility. That has allowed the Seats Inc. plant to remain stocked as well as supply goods to others in the area. Fastenal also brought personal protective equipment (PPE) vending machines to the plant, allowing employees to remain safe. 

Another innovative partnership came in the form of an unused commercial kitchen at the facility and a pastry chef needing space. Seats Inc. reached out to Lupita’s Kitchen, another Spring Hill business, who was needing room to grow her baked goods venture and offering customers a storefront. In November, Lupita’s Kitchen opened inside the commercial kitchen at the Seats Inc. facility.

“We’re here to stay,” Stevens said. “We’re not a company that hops around to find different opportunities. We’re a growing company in this area that’s doing a lot for their employees.” 

Seats Inc. is currently accepting applications for their Spring Hill plant. To learn more about Seats Inc. or to apply for a job, visit their website at www.seatsinc.com

Seats Photo 1