Randy Woyak, the owner of the Rookies Sports Pub and the Blue Top motel/restaurant/banquet hall at 3425 Church Street in Stevens Point, is in the process of making some changes to the restaurant side of the historic south side business.
Woyak, who has owned the business for about seven-and-a-half years, describes it as a modernizing of the building and a transformation from a supper club to sports dining.
“The sports bar does really well,” he said. “We wanted to make sure we tied the two in together.”
The physical changes wrapped up Aug. 6 and include new restrooms, space for several six-person dining booths in the bar, and a new polished concrete floor and a lunch counter in the restaurant. The redesign also created a better flow from the bar to the restaurant which are joined by a doorway instead of a hallway as they were before.
“We hired local guys to come in and do our work. It was a fun project, 17 days from start to finish,” said Woyak. “I’m really happy with how it turned out and we’ve gotten a really good response.”
To complete the transformation, Woyak hired Teresa Lohry as Blue Top’s new banquet and restaurant manager. Lohry, who has eight years of restaurant experience, mostly in the Madison area, started on the same day the renovations were completed.
“I like the drive of the restaurant business,” she said, noting that there is very little clock watching in her job. “We’re not a bar that just waits for business to come in… That’s something I’m driven by.”
She said the remodel has also increased the types of customers the business can attract. With plug-ins for laptops at booths in the bar and free wireless Internet, Lohry said the business is able to serve a more diverse clientele. “We’re getting a lot of new people in here,” she said. “They’re hearing about it and that’s something we want to keep building on.”
Lohry is also working on a new menu for the restaurant, which will be debuted toward the end of October. “We’re trying to build a modern menu,” she said, noting that it will be a mix of a traditional pub menu with some healthier options as well. Woyak describes it as “friendly-food at a local level instead of a chain level.” He said he does plan to keep some of the more successful items from Blue Top’s past. “We still do buckets of chicken and fish to go. That’s old school,” he said. “We’re still staying true to the core.”
The bar and restaurant also plans to expand its beer offerings to 52 different draft beers, up from 40 currently. “A lot of people don’t know a whole lot about different micro-brews,” said Lohry, noting that Rookies Sports Pub and Rookies Grill will be good place for people to learn more about them.
Woyak started taking an active role in managing the day-to-day operations of the Blue Top about four-and-a-half years ago, when he started Rookies Sports Pub, the bar side of the business, which has come to be known for live entertainment, including music and comedy shows and sponsorship of local softball teams.
He said the changes to the restaurant will build on the success of the bar and be the next evolution for a business that started as an open-air drive-in built by the Zakrzewskis of Blue Top Farms before becoming enclosed as a supper club. “Things have changed since then,” he said.
For questions about the bar, restaurant or banquet space, call 715-344-7026 or visit the bar’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rookies.sportspub.1.