Club 400 celebrating 68th anniversary with prices rolled back to 1981

By MATT MASTERSON - Freeman Staff

Jan. 16, 2016

WAUKESHA - It’s been 68 years since Les Paul played the first set on opening night at Club 400.

On Jan. 6, 1948, George and Ralph Polsfuss, Paul’s father and brother, opened the Club 400 as a nightclub, taking the name of the Soo Line locomotive No. 400 which chugged through the city each day.

Current owner Dan Pokwinski purchased the club from the estate in 1981 and this weekend, he’ll be celebrating anniversaries for both himself and the club by rolling prices back to what they were when he began running the Waukesha landmark, 322 Williams St.

When the doors open at Club 400 at 6 a.m. today, customers will take a step back in time back to when they could buy a beer of a shot for under a dollar.

“We’re rolling back the prices back to when I had it in ’81 and we’re just moving up the prices as time goes by,” Pokwinski said.

That means 50-cent shots and 25-cent taps on the same drinks Pokwinski served customers there more than three decades ago. Those prices will increase each hour throughout the day until they’re back at normal levels.

The celebration will continue into the evening when the Green Bay Packers take on the Arizona Cardinals in the divisional round of the NFL playoffs. Free food will be available at halftime, and door prizes will be announced after the game.

Thirty-six years into ownership, Pokwinski plans to keep celebrating the club’s history into the future.

“I did the 50th (anniversary) and then the 60th big, and now it’s the 68th,” he said. “Who knows, if I’m still around at (the) 75 (anniversary), we’ll do it big again. It’s just been a tradition.”