Former Comedy Cafe building on Brady sold for arcade bar

Up-Down MKE expected to open in February

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The owner of Des Moines-based Up-Down arcade bar has purchased the former Comedy Café building on Brady Street where he is planning a Milwaukee location.

Joshua Ivey purchased the building at 615 E. Brady St. under the LLC Milwaukee Holdings from long-time owner Salvatore Safina for $725,000, according to state records. The building has an assessed value of $740,000, according to city records.

Inside of Up-Down in Des Moines taken from Facebook page.

In August, Ivey and business partner Sam Summers announced plans to open Up-Down MKE at the location in February 2018.

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Ivey started Up-Down in 2011 in Des Moines. He has since expanded to Minneapolis and Kansas City.

The bar features more than 40 arcade games from the 1980s and 1990s, pinball machines, skee-ball, Nintendo and Sega console gaming, life-size Jenga and connect four.

The bar also boasts “an extensive craft beer selection with 20 beers on tap and even more bottles and cans, as well as ‘80s and ‘90s inspired cocktails.”

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The Comedy Café moved from Brady Street to 1033 N. Old World Third St. in the summer of 2015.

Safina recently closed the Comedy Café and Giovanni’s restaurant, which was on the first floor of the building.

He sold the 1033 N. Old World Third St. building to Robert Wiltgen, the owner of Who’s on Third, who is planning to convert it to a restaurant and tavern called Oak Barrel Public House.

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