Milwaukee's Koz's Mini Bowl for sale by owner

Milwaukee's iconic Koz's Mini Bowl needs a new owner after more than four decades in business.

Koz's Mini Bowl was once voted one of the best bars in America by Esquire. It's billed as "the last duckpin bowling in the U.S."

The business is home to four duckpin bowling lanes that are still in high demand.

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"People are still here for the bowling. It’s a great atmosphere," said Justin Kosakoski, owner. 

Kosakoski's father bought the business in 1978. 

"This was the last remaining original set of lanes," said Kosakoski. "My dad was a legend here he put in a good foot in the door for me to do the same thing he did. People come here for the family atmosphere and just what we give to people."

The sale has nothing to do with the pace of the business. In fact, Kosakoski said business is good, and they regularly have to turn people away for bowling.

He is selling because he is ready for his next chapter and a slower pace of life.

"Hundreds of thousands of games have been played here," said Kosakoski. 

In 2020, Kosakoski broke both legs in a hit-and-run.

"I was able to make a recovery and then only open on the weekends, and I finally got to walking and I am a very stubborn person," said Kosakoski. "I like to do everything on my own. I got back on my own feet."

He said he’s been running the bar for nearly 20 years and is ready to turn the page.

"Running it all by yourself, it’s all day every day," said Kosakoski. "Telling people I am departing my legacy here is stabbing a lot of hearts, but I am just ready for my next chapter of life."

Patrick Simonis, the listing agent, said they are looking for someone who can take Koz's into the next generation and safeguard the "Milwaukee institution."

"It’s our hope that Koz's continues to operate under a new owner that takes it to the next chapter," said Simonis. "I hope nothing changes."  

Simonis said since the listing went live, he's been contacted by dozens of people sharing their love for Koz's. The new owner will get everything needed to operate the restaurant, along with two apartments upstairs. 

"He turns down 20-30 people a day looking to come bowl," said Simonis. "It’s a great investment, and if you can salvage a piece of Milwaukee’s history at the same time, I think it’s a win-win for everybody."

Kosakoski said he'll still be around.

"Of course, I will be," he said. "I got to check up on what’s going on."

Koz's location at 2078 S. 7th Street is a historic property. It has been in continual use as a saloon/parlor/tavern since the 1880s and has featured duckpin bowling since 1947.