By Joe Bachman
A new era is upon Hollyrock’s Tavern — an era that will see continued tradition and splendor.
As of Aug. 30, longtime patrons Raquel Dostal, 28, and Steve Sanger, 37, will be taking the reigns from current owner Tom Striegel, and plan to continue the tradition and prominence Hollyrock’s has carried for decades.
Sanger is a mill worker that has seen three different owners through the 17 years he’s been coming to Hollyrock’s, named after the original owner’s wife, Holly. Dostal has been a bartender at Hollyrock’s for six years, but little did she know a simple job offer via Facebook message from Striegel would one day land her in the position to own Hollyrock’s.
Very little will change when it comes to the transition between owners, and that includes music, a notable mainstay for the establishment for many years.
“Music is the big thing about this bar — it has to stay a music bar,” said Sanger. “We’re going to try to get some younger groups in and give more people a shot to showcase their music.”
Among the small, but potential changes could be the addition of a six-tap rotation of local and national craft beers.
“I want to showcase more craft beer,” said Sanger. “I want to do a six-tap rotation if I can make it work — to have a section on deck, so when one [beer] taps out you pop a new one up.”
Aside from slight construction to the interior, a few color changes, and the addition of an eventual late night kitchen, above all, the new owners seek for Hollyrock’s to have as much community involvement as possible.
“We want to be here a lot and be involved with the community,” said Dostal. “We’re going to be open to any suggestions anyone has — “We love everyone here, and we want everyone coming back and to hear what they have to say.”
Community will continue to be the main focus, according to Dostal and Sanger, from art, charity work, tavern leagues, and much more. However, change is not something the couple plans to do a lot of in regards to the longtime establishment, and that’s the way it will ultimately stay.
“There really aren’t going to be that many changes,” said Sanger. It’s going to stay the eclectic, instrument-hanging bar that everyone knows and loves.”
Hollyrock’s is located at 114 2nd St. North in Wisconsin Rapids.