Lakeside reopening set for New Year’s Eve

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Lakeside Ballroom in Guttenberg is set to re-open under new management on New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31. From left are owners Kyle Selberg, Norie Thuerauf and Ron Shorkey. (Press photo by Caroline Rosacker)

By Caroline Rosacker

In 1927, William H. Kann and Sons built Lakeside Ballroom in Guttenberg for a cost of $17,000. It is estimated that the cost to build the Ballroom today would be over $2.5 million. The venue has changed hands throughout the years, and in 2006 was purchased by the Lakeside Preservation Committee, LLC, comprised of Jeff and Kari Friedlein and Ross and Mary Abbott. The group has recently sold the iconic ballroom, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, to Kyle Selberg of Waukon, Ron Shorkey from Roland, and Norie Thuerauf, owner of Norie's RestoBar, in Guttenberg. 

"We are grateful for the Preservation Committee's hard work and dedication throughout the years," said Selberg. "We will build on the customer experience they have created in the bar, restaurant, and event space that the community is accustomed to."

New owners and manager

Kyle Selberg has worked in the financial services industry for 40 years and is also the owner of the Eagle View Motel & Retreat (recently voted "Best View in Guttenberg") and other area properties. He is looking forward to this new business venture. 

Ron Shorkey has spent the last 35 years as a commercial and residential general contractor and is in partnership with Impact Self Storage LLC., a self-storage company offering personal storage solutions across the United States, and the JRG Group LLC, a real estate investment firm. 

Norie Thuerauf owns Norie's RestoBar (recently voted "Best Service in Guttenberg") and Lumpia Shanghi Food truck in Guttenberg, and has 35 years experience in the restaurant business. She also owned and operated the former Sample Bar and Grill in Guttenberg. 

"Lakeside had been for sale for a while, as the Friedleins and Abbotts wanted to find the right buyers," commented Selberg. "As Ron and I became more familiar with Guttenberg and got to know Norie, we concluded we might be the right buyers. Collectively, Norie has the expertise to run a restaurant and bar on a daily basis, Ron has the contractor and finance knowledge and I have the sales and marketing background. And we all have a business background." 

The former owners' Midwest work ethic made an impression on the new owners. Shorkey noted. "The previous owners worked very hard to build this business up. We are impressed that Kari Friedlein, even though she is under no obligation, continues to assist and meet with people to book wedding receptions into 2022. Mary Abbott has also been great and encourages us to contact her if we have any questions or concerns." 

Event Center

The trio's tentative plans are to transform the space into a multi-purpose venue. "We are open to trying different things, and see what the community responds to," explained Selberg. "When we think of Lakeside we envision a destination – offering a fine dining restaurant, a sports bar and grill, a tiki bar in the summer months, and large event center for receptions and live bands – four venues in one."

An expansive menu is on the table. "We plan to offer burgers and fries and 'tailgate' food in the sports bar, which will have multiple viewing options for a variety of sports, and fine dining options in the main restaurant,"  Thuerauf noted. "The upscale menu will offer choices that are different from Norie's RestoBar menu." Norie's RestoBar will remain open to offer the community another option in food, drink and atmosphere. 

Lakeside's construction, built in the middle of Prohibition, has provided a possible theme for the fine dining portion of the event center. "We are considering a 'speak easy' theme for the dining area," shared Thuerauf. "Classic Midwest American food selections – including steaks, pork chops, ribs and seafood will be some of the offerings." 

"We are building an expansive deck that will connect to the entrance of the sports bar," described Shorkey. "The tiki bar will offer tropical drinks and beer. There will be shaded seating areas, horseshoes, bags and multiple fire pits for groups of four to enjoy. Food and other drink options will be available at Lakeside's Sports Bar and Grill, and can be served or carried outdoors."  

Live entertainment 

The sports bar and grill is set to open New Years Eve, Dec. 31, and a soft opening on Jan. 22. Lakeside’s Grand Opening will be Memorial Day Weekend with the main event beinging a performance by the popular, late 70s band, Head East. 

Scheduled performers include: 

Jan. 22: Not Quite Brothers 

Feb. 5: Blind Mice 

Feb. 12: Valentine's Day weekend - Toxic Blond 

Feb. 26: Pat McCurdy

March 18: St. Patrick's Day weekend - band to be determined. 

April 2: Smoking Gun Show Down 

May 28: Memorial Day weekend - Grand opening Head East. 

July 4th weekend: Your Mom 

Aug. 11 & 12: “Play Ball” Music Fest - Band to be determined. 

Sept. 2 - 4: Labor Day weekend: The Passion 

Oct. 15: Musical Tribute to Billy Joel & Elton John - Umbrella Arts event open to public. 

And more to come! 

Please check the Ballroom Facebook page and website, for updates. 

The trio have met with local organizations in an effort to understand the needs of the community. Shorkey commented. “Although we are hoping not to lose money – making money is not our sole objective. We want to contribute to community improvement. And we hope to bring in more visitors to spend more money in the community. That will bring direct employment opportunities to Guttenberg.”

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