Newk's Eatery is expanding into northwest Arkansas.
The Jackson, Mississippi, fast-casual restaurant will open the first of four planned restaurants Monday in Fayetteville. The remaining three — in Bentonville, Rogers and Fort Smith — are to be open in the region by 2016.
The Fayetteville location, at Spring Creek Center on Joyce Boulevard, will mark Newk's fifth in Arkansas.
The northwest Arkansas expansion is being carried out by Jim Lynch and Jim White, who together owned grocery stores and operated branded eateries in convenience stores throughout Arkansas. Fayetteville was chosen for the the duo's first location because of the proximity to the University of Arkansas and the area's retail and business industry.
Newk's Eatery specializes in salads, California-style pizzas, sandwiches and soups. The restaurant chain has 74 locations in 13 states. Its first Arkansas location was in Hot Springs, which opened in 2011. Others include one in Jonesboro, one in Little Rock and one in North Little Rock.