Muskegon ‘misfits’ create new, unique entertainment space downtown

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“One of the things we said from the beginning was, ‘We want to bring people together and live together.'”

No matter what the challenge, the goal is always the same, says Michael Brower.

“There’s something for everyone,” he said. “They can all get together, make new friends, hang out with existing ones, and really enjoy life.”

An experience for the group, made by the group.

Michael Brower, Joel Kamp, Chad Dorn. Michael calls them the “Muskegon Band of Misfits,” but when they’re together, nothing feels out of place.

Pigeon Hill Brewing Company

“We joke that we’re brothers,” said Michael. “The great thing about brothers is that we fight.

In 2014, they founded the popular Pigeon Hill Brewing Company together. Then Brewers Lounge added his taproom to their collection.

“We’re very fortunate to work together the way we do,” Michael said. “I mean, most ownership groups aren’t families.”

The group acquired a small craft brewery and turned it into a statewide success, exporting Muskegon beer throughout Michigan.

But the nonconformist still felt that something was… well… missing.

“Almost everyone on our team and all ownership of Pigeon Hill lives downtown in the heart of Muskegon,” said Michael. “We feel like we have a lot of growth and vibrancy, we see a lot of work to do, but at the same time there is still a lot of work to be done.”

Pigeon Hill Brewing Company Brewers Lounge Taproom Team

Pigeon Hill Brewing Company

They spent many sleepless nights brainstorming ideas and workshops, always coming back to the same questions. “As a resident of Muskegon, what do you want in this area?”

Socibowl is the answer they came up with.

“To make this place where Muskegon is kind of a metropolis feel right in the heart of our downtown right now,” said Michael.

Socibowl is a multi-experience entertainment space with food, drink, darts and yard games centered around the team’s title of bowling.

Socibowl panoramic video view

However, it’s not just about bowling. They have his 6 lanes of duckpin bowling.

At the same time, it also favors the intended use of that exact space.

“This building was built for bowling during the heyday of American bowling,” Michael said. “It was then purchased by Brunswick, which operated as a test facility, so we were actually testing all our new equipment here.”

Brunswick Bowling Alley Muskegon

Pigeon Hill Brewing Company

After Brunswick left, the Downtown Development Authority took over. According to Michael, the misfit turned it into a series of nightclubs before falling into disrepair until he bought it as a Pigeon Hill production facility in 2015.

“This is where the original Pigeon Hill can was born,” said Michael. So we built a new production facility and started asking ourselves, ‘What can we do in this space? ”

For most people, the term “nonconforming” may have a negative connotation. Really, it’s just a non-conforming person. People who think outside the box.

That’s what Michael, Joel and Chad did. They hope their story will inspire others to do the same.

“I think this shows what happens in Muskegon,” said Michael. I see a lot more of it coming. ”

“I think we see a future for Muskegon in this area,” he added.

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