STEVENSVILLE — Lakeshore Lanes in Stevensville will receive a fruity makeover if all goes as planned for its prospective buyers.
Planning to buy the business are Dan and Leah Peat, who want to expand Peat’s Original Cider, which they opened about two years ago in Paw Paw to make hard cider. Joining them as partners in the venture are Josh and Tiffany Cosner of Hagar Township.
Stevensville Village Council trustees Wednesday approved recommending to the state that the proposed business be given a small winemaker license so hard cider can be made there.
In addition, Dan Peat said they will keep it as a bowling alley.
“We wanted to find a space that we could really grow into and own as a way to build our wealth and everything else,” he said. “What we really love about that space is that it can be built in phases.”
The Peats and Cosners said they were at the meeting simply to introduce themselves. But that’s when Trustee Chris Mason, who co-owns Watermark Brewing Co. across the street from the Village Hall, had an idea.
Mason and his parters went through the process three years ago to obtain a microbrewer license. He said there’s no reason the village trustees couldn’t vote on the resolution that night, contingent on the village attorney’s approval. Because the property is already properly zoned, he said the proposal didn’t need to go through the planning commission.
Mason worked with the Peats’ attorney, Brian McMahon, to find the proper paperwork online and to get it printed out at the village so the trustees could approve it.
“Thank you,” Tiffany Cosner said after the vote. “Local government works.”
After the meeting, the current owners of Lakeshore Lanes, Kirk and Janice Wutzke of Stevensville, explained that it is time to retire. They said they put the bowling alley up for sale almost four years ago. The closing on the sale is expected to take place at the end of the month contingent on the state approving the small winemaker license.
Leah Peat said they want to make the transition as smooth as possible so league bowling is not disrupted. But with such a large facility, Dan Peat said renovations could be done in stages.
The Peats and Cosners said they want to keep the business family friendly.
Contact: lwrege@TheHP.com, 932-0361, Twitter: @HPWrege