1926 E. Capitol Drive
Owners: Jake and Alaina Bresette
Service: Surfboards, paddleboards, skateboards, clothing and wetsuits
[caption id="attachment_327778" align="alignright" width="350"] Lake Effect Surf shop[/caption]
How did you decide to open a surf shop in Milwaukee?
Jake Bresette: “I’ve been surfing the Great Lakes for seven or eight years and when I went to look up surf shops, the only one in the state was in Sheboygan. I always wondered why there wasn’t one in Milwaukee. I was working in insurance, which was not what I wanted to do, so a few years ago, I thought it would be cool to start something in this area.”
How big is the surf scene in Milwaukee?
“It’s getting bigger and bigger every year. Facebook and Instagram have really helped boost awareness of the sport. When I first started going out, there were maybe one or two other guys out there. Now, on a good day, you can see as many as 20 people at Atwater Beach.”
What is the top seller in the store?
“Our local-themed clothing, like our Wiloha clothing, is definitely our best seller.” Wiloha is a word the Bresettes invented combining Wisconsin and Aloha, which has been a big hit with customers.
When you and your wife, Alaina go on vacation, is it always beach-based?
“A lot of the time it is ocean-orientated – I’m always looking for waves – but she is a killer snowboarder, so she’ll say, ‘Let’s do the slopes.’ We can appreciate anything.”
What is your favorite beach?
“Here in Milwaukee, I really like Atwater Beach; otherwise, North Point, at the south end of Bradford Beach. In the state, Sheboygan is a great spot to surf.”