Two local businessmen recently purchased a former church property off 120th Avenue in Broomfield with plans to develop the Wonderland Brewing Co., a craft brewery with amenities designed to live up to the business' theme park-like name.
Partners Robert Lucero, whose past work includes brewery and Disney attraction design and construction, and Dale Reeder, race car driver and owner of JingDaddy Motorsports, formed Wonderland Brewing Company LLC and recently purchased the property at 5450 W. 120th Ave. for $1.325 million, according to Broomfield County property records.
Wonderland Brewing acquired the 3.6-acre site near 120th and Sheridan Boulevard from The Crossing Church of the Nazarene, a Westminster-based church with plans to expand in Northglenn.
In addition to the beer -- which will be brewed by Joshua Willett, formerly of Fort Collins Brewing Co. and Denver's Wynkoop -- the site itself should help differentiate Wonderland from the ever-growing crop of craft brewers, Lucero said.
"You can't call a brewery Wonderland and then have a dumpy garage" as your base of operations, he said.
The nearly 9,000-square-foot building that most recently served as a church youth center will house a 10-barrel brewhouse, a family-friendly taproom with TVs and a 1,600-square-foot ping pong hall with six tables.
The property also has a full basketball court, four half-courts, area for volleyball and a neighboring residence.
In addition to the potential for physical activities, Lucero is eyeing partnering with a restaurateur to open a bistro in the neighboring house. He also has his sights on using the expansive outdoor space for events such as a farmers' market, car show, art shows, live music events and other activities.
"We really want to bring the community together," he said. " ... Here in the suburbs in Denver, there really isn't anything like that."
The development of the outdoor area is being considered "phase two," he said, noting that work soon will be under way to outfit the existing building into a brewery and taproom.
Lucero, who owns a 70 percent stake of Wonderland, said he hopes to have the brewery operational by later this year.
In the meantime, Reeder has plastered the Wonderland logo and that of the brewery's Short Track Blonde beer on his racecar and pro truck in an effort to generate buzz.
The brewery eventually will aim to can some of its beers and distribute them to entities such as Colorado National Speedway in Erie and golf courses, Lucero said. Wonderland is expected to open with eight beers and expand the offerings to fill out the dozen draft lines planned for the establishment.
Initial recipes under development are for some traditional-style English beers, an India Pale Ale and small-batch and specialty barrel-aged brews.
"First and foremost, you've got to have great beer," Lucero said.
Wonderland will be Broomfield's second locally operated brewery and fourth craft brewing operation.
Existing breweries and brewpubs include Big Choice Brewing Co., 7270 W. 118th Place, Unit A; C.B. and Potts, 555 Zang St.; and Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant, 1 Flatiron Circle, Suite 428.
Contact Camera Business Writer Alicia Wallace at 303-473-1332 or email@example.com.