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Eau Claire brewery gets final green light for expansion

Posted May 15th, 2015

  • Lazy Monk Brewery

By Amanda Tyler, WEAU

There's more good news for an Eau Claire craft brewery hoping to move into a bigger building.

There were plenty of hugs and celebrations Tuesday night for Theresa and Leos Frank and their family as they celebrated the final step toward growing their small craft brewery.

The celebrations came after the Eau Claire City Council gave the final green light for the Franks to purchase the old Charlson's building on Madison Street.

"It started as my husband's dream, and now it's our family's dream. It's really a success story and we are very excited," Theresa Frank said following the vote.

Frank says their current location on Putnam Street doesn't fit their growing needs. Now, they are ready to expand and bring more to the Eau Claire community at their new location.

With plans to add a 6,000 square foot tap room and a beer garden, Eau Claire's Economic Development Administrator Mike Schatz says the expansion will kick start redevelopment in Eau Claire's west bank area.

"I think it was a good idea to make it something that's a destination for downtown. People enjoy touring breweries and it's a big draw for the area," Schatz said.

Schatz says the city plans to expand bike trails in the area. While there's nothing set in stone, he says the city is talking to several other developers about potential new businesses.

"We can't wait to see what happens on the west bank because the sky is the limit," Frank said, commenting on the future expansions.

Lazy Monk's owners say the purchase of the building will be complete by the end of this month. After that, crews will start renovating the Charlson's building. The hope is to have the brewery ready by September. 

Click here to watch the WEAU story.