SOUTH MILWAUKEE – In its 115 years, the J.R. Grunder Building in downtown South Milwaukee – today home to Moran’s Pub – has housed everything from a real estate office to a bakery, confectionary, and ice cream parlor to a pool hall to a lunch room, restaurant and cafe. Go-go dancers danced here at one point.
Indeed, 912 Milwaukee Ave. has about seen it all since it was built in 1907. Now you can add “wizard-themed pop-up” to that list, as Moran’s Pub transforms from an Irish and sports pub to something even more magical in the month of December. The pop-up, curated by local artist Lauren Marvell, includes events, specialty drinks, games and more through December 31.
The idea was Marvell’s; she is a Milwaukee artist who has worked closely with Moran for years as a designer. Marvell is a freelance illustrator, and her work as an illustrator has included the design of beer labels for Central Waters Brewing Co. She has also created a mural for the Cudahy Health Department and illustrations for the city of South Milwaukee to beautify empty storefronts in its downtown. Marvell also won a nationwide design competition with Culver’s as part of the “Thank You Farmers Project.” “It was rewarding to be able to work on something special for a pub that means so much to me,” Marvell said.