Janesville35.2°

Former Lake Lawn Resort workers hoping to be rehired

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Darryl Enriquez
April 5, 2011
— Joe Hoare, a former maintenance and grounds worker at Lake Lawn Resort, is anxiously awaiting word about returning to work there.

Based on a handshake purchase agreement between would-be buyer Jim Drescher and owner Anchor Bank, the 128-year-old resort is set to reopen. Drescher is just not sure when.


He's even less sure when he'd begin hiring a staff to run the resort.


Drescher said Monday he doesn't have a signed contract that gives him ownership of the resort. He's asking former Lake Lawn employees to be patient.


"Former employees will get first preference," Drescher said,


Drescher, former president of Geneva National Golf Club, said Hoare is one of many who want to come back. He's received about 40 resumes in the mail and many phone calls.


Drescher first must hammer out a written contract with the bank and then close on the 241-acre resort, he said.


"There's not much I can do until we have an (written) agreement," Drescher said. "All the minutia takes time. I appreciate that people are anxious to get back to work."


Anchor Bank in 2009 filed for foreclosure against owners of the resort. It closed in December and more than 300 lost their jobs.


If he's able to buy the property for $8.6 million, Drescher said, he wants the golf course and marina to open as soon as possible.


The hotel and restaurants would take longer to open, he said. He has little control over such tasks as inspections and permits that could push back those openings by a few months, he said.


Drescher said the resort would have a soft opening to shake out miscues and then hold a grand opening.


Everything from gas lines to lawn mowers to kitchen equipment and guest rooms need to be inspected, he said.


"That's going to take time."


A firm to do the hiring and possibly hold a job fair is lined up, he said.


Hoare, who lives in Williams Bay, is a retired union contractor from Illinois. He said he'd be first in line for a Lake Lawn job.


Before retirement, Hoare often took his family to Lake Lawn for vacations.


"I really enjoyed working there," Hoare said. "You'd have to normally pay someone for that beautiful of a view."



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