An expansion of the old Green Lake Lanes and Pizza bowling alley at W1802 County Road A broke ground last week Wednesday.
The project is part of a $1 million renovation and expansion of the old bowling alley.
Ripon native Justin Krueger purchased the property back in December with plans to revamp the bowling alley and create an addition to the building containing an arcade.
“This is really for the community,” he said.
Krueger, CEO of the Arizona-based MFRG-ICON Construction, told the Commonwealth the renovation will feature new state-of-the-art bowling pinspotters, synthetic lanes, an electronic scoring system and new furniture.
The project recently broke ground on a large, 2,500 square foot addition that will be used as an arcade and also will include a handicap bathroom, birthday party room and a conference room. In addition, Krueger said the business will feature a new kitchen and a new menu.
Krueger is working with architect Bill Hoch of BlowFisH Architects to design the revamped bowling alley and arcade. He hopes to open the bowling alley by June and have the addition finished by mid-summer, dubbing the revitalized property, “The 300 Club.”
“I think it’s going to be good for the community,” Krueger said. “I think it’s something that’s unique; there’s going to be a legit arcade right there in Green Lake with state-of-the-art bowling equipment.”
In fact, Krueger said The 300 Club will be the only bowling alley in Wisconsin using the specific type of pinspotters being installed.
He noted the pinspotters are attached to the bowling pins on strings. Krueger explained that the pins will collapse like any other bowling alley, but the pinspotters will pull them up with string, straighten them out and then set them down.
“It’s a kind of a big deal in the bowling world," he said. "I didn’t know that when we committed to it, but people are going to be coming just to check out the equipment, apparently.”
In terms of the timeline for the project, Krueger noted installation for much of the equipment will begin in April, while a lot of the cosmetic changes, such as new flooring, ceiling tiles, lighting and painting are underway. A new sign also is expected to be installed in April.
“The meat and potatoes of the renovation start next month,” he said. “... We’re redoing the whole exterior; it’ll be a totally different look of the building, too.”
For the arcade, Krueger noted he bought a semi truck full of games when an arcade in California went out of business.
Although he isn’t sure how many jobs will be created by The 300 Club, Krueger said the business will begin hiring in the next few months. He added that the business will be open year-round, rather than seasonally.
Additionally, Krueger noted he’s looking into potentially hiring another firm to manage the day-to-day operations of the business.
“I’m not going to be operating it personally; that’s not my forte,” he said.
Krueger hopes the business will become a fun community establishment, where people can relax and enjoy themselves.
“It adds something locally,” he said. “People don’t have to drive too far; that was the biggest vision for it. I don’t really have an endgame in mind; it’s going to be fun, I’m going to enjoy it and create some jobs along the way.”
For more information as it becomes available, follow “The 300 Club — Green Lake” on Facebook.