January 4, 2021 – West Bend, WI – Slesar Glass, a family-owned store since 1949, has been sold. Owner Paul Slesar said his dad Frank Slesar and his uncle Joe started the company.
“They were working for Berris Furniture selling appliances,” said Slesar. “My dad thought everybody will have a stove and refrigerator some day and they would be out of business. He was forward thinking so in 1949 there was a barn where the Centrum Building is and they started in there and then built the shop in 1954 at 115 N. Sixth Avenue. In 1983 we were able to rent the showroom building on the corner of Sixth Avenue and Hickory Street from Erv Van Beek and about 10 years ago Erv offered it to my wife and I bought the building and did some renovations to it and it has worked.”
Photo courtesy Greg Van Beek
“Erv Van Beek had a Plymouth dealership and in the mid-1960s there was a printing press for the Daily News in the building and then we moved the glass business here,” Slesar said. “We spray painted and put in new windows and really brightened up the place.”
Neighboring businesses at the time included City Hall across the street, now currently home to Time Investments. “There were attorneys to the south, Winkler’s Office City was to the east and before Marth Realty was to the north West Bend Amusement was on the back side of some Main Street buildings along with Hankerson’s Bakery,” said Slesar.
Since mid-2018 Slesar had the business up for sale. According to records in the city assessor’s office the buildings, 109 and 111 N. Sixth Avenue sold on November 17, 2020 for $500,000 apiece.
The buyer of both the buildings and the business is Joshua Haas of Fredonia. Haas owns Door Professionals, a garage door company. “I’m just really excited to be here,” he said. “It is a good fit with this business as we do steel and metal garage doors and now, we’ll be adding more glass work.”
Haas comes from a family business background in central Wisconsin. “My grandpa William started a lumber company, Haas Builders Supply Inc., in 1973. My dad, Jere, purchased it in 1999 and that is still in the family,” he said.
A 2006 graduate of Lincoln High School, Joshua went to North Dakota State for a couple years and graduated from UW-Stevens Point.
Married and a father to Leah, born April 11, 2020, Haas is also a Village Trustee in Fredonia the District 2 Supervisor on the Ozaukee County Board.
“The Slesar family is a great, we have a wonderful team and phenomenal staff and we will offer more to our customers adding a taste of something new with the garage doors as well,” Haas said. “We’re extremely excited to be in this community and grateful for the customers we have.”
Paul Slesar said he will hang around for a while to ensure a smooth transition.