They are the oldest sanctioned lanes in the country, making Holler House the first bowling alley in the United States, a fact that has been confirmed by the United States Bowling Congress.
The tavern dates back to 1908, and it specializes in bottled beer (there is nothing on tap). It earned a shout-out in Esquire as one of the Best Bars in America.
You won’t find flashy bowling promotions or modern conveniences here, as things are still pretty much the same as they were over a century ago. The walls are decked with memorabilia dating back to 1910s. The bowling lanes are still the original wood, not a synthetic wood surface, and the pins are hand set by a real person.
If you can’t bowl without cheesy graphics of cartoon pins running around on a computer scoring system, this probably won’t be the place for you, as you must write your score by hand.
“Holler”-ing at the Holler House
But things get pretty wild here, too, as explained in a Courier Press sports column: “The tradition is, the first time a woman comes in, she takes off her bra, signs it and hangs it up somewhere.”
The alley’s name “Holler House” was coined by a person who could not believe the boisterousness and noise level of the antics that were going on inside.
Any visitor to Milwaukee should experience local beer and bowling, and Holler House is a very unique way to do it.
(Photograph taken by Dori)
Prices: A- (cheap beer)
Historical Significance: A+
Additional Features: N/A
How Would You Rate It?