Contract still not finalized for Ixonia Firemanís Hall lease
Building likely to be used by Oconomowoc businesswoman

By Jake Meister - Enterprise Staff

June 8, 2017

  The Ixonia Firemenís Hall is scheduled to be leased out by the town beginning in October.
Submitted photo

IXONIA ó Starting mid-October, the purpose of the storied Ixonia Firemenís Hall will change completely and an area woman is likely to be the person behind the transformation.

Though a contract has not yet been finalized, the Ixonia Town Board voted in May to accept the bid to lease the space made by Kristy Zinsheim, who owns Betrothed Boutique and Modern Bloom flower shop, both located at 203 E. Wisconsin Ave. in Oconomowoc.

The town informed the Enterprise on Monday that the lease contract has not yet been finalized.

Ixonia Chairman Perry T. Goetsch said around the time of the vote that five parties were interested in leasing the property and two submitted proposals. The town had no interest in selling the building and had only hoped to lease.

Goetsch said the selection of the offer came down to what what each of the two was proposing. He said the village wanted to pick the offer that was in the best interest of the town and the most viable.

Though he said the other offer was good, Goetsch said Zingsheimís proposal was a little better.

A history of the hall

The hall was built in 1949 and still features the same all-wood dance floor, which has long been admired by people throughout the state.

In addition to accommodating some quality dancing, the hall has hosted a number of other social events, such as weddings.

Norm Melcher, who had attended his first dance at the venue several decades ago, previously told the Enterprise that weddings at the hall were once so popular that many couples would plan their special day around when the venue wasnít booked just so they could celebrate at the spot.

The Ixonia Volunteer Fire Department had previously sold the hall to the town in exchange for a payment of $50,000 a year spread out over 10 years. The last payment was made this year.

The department, which founded the hall and still operated it after the deal, was hamstrung by declining volunteer help and diminishing public interest in dances and events.

The final dance at the hall was held in April. Prior to the dance, Ixonia Volunteer Fire Department President Dale Saeger said most members have reached an age where itís difficult to offer their time. The younger, active volunteer firemen and EMTs also donít have as much time to tend bar or perform other duties at the special events, he added.