Fire House Tavern in Downtown Eau Claire Sold

Lauren Fisher, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Becky and William Glass announced on The Fire House's Facebook page Thursday morning that Pablo Properties, an Eau Claire property investment company, will purchase The Fire House tavern (202 Gibson St, Eau Claire.)  The sale will be finalized sometime in May.

Becky, with the help of The Fire House staff, will help train Pablo Properties Food and Beverages Manager Ken Buell in on the workings of the establishment.  This arrangement will last several months, according to Julia Johnson, a Pablo Properties partner.

“We are super grateful that she’s staying on as the manager,” Buell said.  “She and the team are the experts on craft beer.”

Johnson and the Glass family have been “comparing notes on friendship, family, and business for years,” she said.  William and Becky’s post on Facebook said that the deal originated during a chat over one of their shared loves: beer.

This sale will bring a nearly decade-long ownership debacle involving the Glass’s, The Fire House, The Brewing Projekt, and the state of Wisconsin to a close.

William and Becky opened The Fire House in 2010. In 2014, Becky assumed full ownership of the business so that William could go on to open The Brewing Projekt.  However, a married couple can not legally own both a brewery and a bar, jointly or separately, in the state of Wisconsin.  

William has acted as Volunteer President of The Brewing Projekt since its opening, with his father, Bill, owning the business, in order to allow the two businesses to exist simultaneously.  

“The Fire House continues to hold its ground as life around Downtown Eau Claire springs up around it, and The Brewing Projekt has gone from a small brewing operation in a worn-down garage to a huge, modern taproom with increased brewing capacity,” the Facebook announcement, signed by Becky and William, reads. “But along with all that excitement and positivity, the spider web of ownership has grown from a minor inconvenience to a major interference in our lives.”

With the sale of The Fire House, William will take legal ownership of The Brewing Projekt.

“We’ve been huge admirers of The Fire House since its existence, and think of it as an honor to add it to what we do,” Johnson said.

"Today we’d like to take a moment to extend a heartfelt thank you to our Fire House family," William and Becky wrote. "those of you who have worked with us, sweat with us, laughed with us, cried with us, and drank beer with us. Without you, The Fire House would be four brick walls with beer inside, but with you, The Fire House has become much more."