Two of Three Available Liquor Licenses Issued

The Sturgeon Bay Common Council approved issuing two available Class B liquor licenses during its Aug 16 meeting.

An existing restaurant – Crate, at 136 N. 3rd Ave. – received one of those licenses under the name BH Canvas, LLC.

Applicant Wendi Carter said the establishment sought the license because it was “looking to better compete with neighboring restaurants. Sturgeon Bay is growing in its dining culture,” Carter said. “Being able to offer a full-alcohol beverage menu is imperative to a completely satisfying dining experience. We want to continue to be a viable business in this culture.” 

The other Class B license issued to Amagma, LLC, is for a new business being established in the former Pamida building at 1023 Egg Harbor Road.

Steve and Tammy Estes stated in their application letter for the yet-to-be-named business that they are planning more than 7,000 square feet of new construction in an existing vacant warehouse space to have an indoor activity center.

“Activity space includes indoor golf simulators, indoor sports simulators, indoor shooting (dry-fire lasers) simulators and ax throwing,” the letter stated. “There will be a conference room, indoor seating, full bar, walk-in cooler and restaurant kitchen.”

Their letter further stated they do not intend to make the business a “night club,” but plan to host leagues, offer lessons with a golf pro and host private parties and corporate events.

“The alcohol would be a complement to the food and activity environment,” they said. “When you sell alcohol in combination with food, your profit margin increases significantly.”

The cost of a Class B beer license is $100, and a Class B liquor license is $500, plus $8.90 for publication, according to the Crate application.

District 3 Alder Dan Williams, who chairs Sturgeon Bay’s Community Protection and Services Committee, said the city received seven applications for the three available Class B liquor licenses, and he said City Attorney Jim Kalny provided the committee with a detailed plan for reviewing those applications.

“We had three [licenses] available to issue, and we are issuing two,” Williams said. “We felt it was important to do what previous councils have done, which is hold one in abeyance for the potential of other development that might come to town that might need a valuable license like that.”

One of the available licenses was previously issued for the site of the former Butch’s Bar at 112 S. 3rd Ave., where a vacant lot now exists after the building was destroyed by a fire in February and then torn down. Butch’s ended up relocating to the former Nautical Inn at 234 Kentucky St., where another license existed.

Williams said the committee has decided not to recommend issuing liquor licenses “for conceptual things without an actual building or plans of construction.”