Local tavern owner Doug Nicholson will add another bar to his holdings after he bought the building Kenny’s on Main, 1300 N. Main St.., is located in.
Nicholson bought the building from Gilbert Paar on Tuesday. Kenneth R. Meyer, owner of Kenny’s on Main, leases the building from Paar. But Nicholson did not buy the business, only the building.
Nicholson also owns the Carriage House Liquor Company, Envi, and The Ivanhoe Pub & Eatery, which are located on or near Main Street. He plans to renovate the space and open his own corner bar at 1300 N. Main St., he said.
“Kenny’s is in there now,” Nicholson said. “I talked to him today and told him that I bought the building, but I’m not looking to keep anyone on as a tenant.”
Kenny’s on Main had been in front of the Common Council when its liquor license was called into question last year after a few customers were charged in separate drunken driving crashes where two people were killed and seven people were injured. Alderman Jeff Coe told Meyer at the meeting that the bar had been mentioned in several incident reports. Meyer told the committee that they check patrons’ identifications with a scanner, but it had stopped working that weekend, according to a story by the Journal Times.
Nicholson said the purchase wasn’t because of the incidents. However, he was approached to see if he had any interest in buying the building from Paar.
“He made an offer I couldn’t refuse,” Nicholson said.
Nicholson hopes to renovate the building so that he can put in a kitchen. One of the ideas he is considering is a corner bar that serves various types of corn dogs, but he hasn’t made any final decisions.
“We’ve been tossing around a few ideas,” he said. “We’re doing focus groups and we’re exploring the idea of putting in a small kitchen and a deep fryer so that we can add food. But we’ll still need to go through health department on getting that.”
Nicholson hasn’t hammered out a specific timeline on when the renovation will begin.
“I don’t know the exact fate of when Kenny’s will close,” Nicholson said. “We’re willing to work with him. I just asked him to put together a reasonable time frame as to when he can vacate the property.”
A call was put into Meyer, but he did not return the call for comment.
Nicholson also purchased adjacent building at 1302 North Main St. from Fred Beuttler, according to the Department of Revenue.