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Part of former brewery entrance to be displayed at Big Al’s

Brad Williams

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Some pieces of a former brewery in La Crosse could be seen downtown again soon. 

The city board of public works has approved an offer by Big Al’s owner Ryan Johnson to take terra cotta fragments which used to be part of the Michel Brewery Arch on 3rd Street. 

The brewery was torn down in 1997 as part of a car dealership expansion, and parts of the arch have been stored on Isle La Plume at the sanitary sewer plant. 

Johnson reportedly plans to install the terra cotta on the south side of the Big Al’s building, facing an outdoor seating area. 

Tim Acklin from the planning department says other people have shown interest in acquiring parts of the Michel stone arch, but part of the difficulty in finding new owners has been the ability to move such large pieces of stone.    

City Hall wants to remove the arch pieces from storage at the city sewer plant before May 1st, so construction can move ahead on a plant expansion.  

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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