Arthur’s Supper Club History:
Originally a truck stop, this property was purchased from Earl Hill by Gene & Eleanor Rock in May of 1946. Rocks continued to run the truck stop until 1951. They then sold to Richard & Iris Umhoefer from Plain. The Umhoefers changed it to a Shell truck stop. In late 1955 they built a new truck stop with showers, bunk beds and a lounge with a television for the truckers.
On the west side of the property, a modern new restaurant opened with Louella Sprecher as manager. The grand opening was February 1956. The new building was called “The Truck-O-Tel”. It continued as a truck stop until January 1966. The showers, bunk beds & lounge were remodeled and changed to a 21-year-old liquor bar called the “Black Watch Cocktail Lounge”. The future owner of the building, Art Bar managed this, Art Baryenbruch.
In Jan. of 1967, a 18-year-old bar called the “Kiltie” was opened in the east part of the building on weekends only. This lasted a few months and then it turned back to a full-time restaurant. In Jan. 1968, it became a true supper club. Dan Wiedenfeld opened what was called “Mr. D’s steakhouse”. He ran it until June 1973. It was then closed a couple of weeks and reopened under new management. After a contest, the name was changed to “House O’ Steaks”.
In July 1976, Art and Shirley Baryenbruch bought the business from the Umhoefers. This is when the name of the business became, “Arthur’s - The Place for Steaks”. Art and Shirley continued to operate it until Nov. 1983 when they sold to the former bar manager Gerald Fitzgerald and wife Sandy. Barb Fitzgerald, Jerry’s sister, joined the business and continued to run it until 1986 when Barb Fitzgerald bought Arthur’s from Jerry.
In December of 1995, Barb sold Arthur’s to John & Mary Pat Kaul. The Kaul’s did a full remodel adding a Steakhouse drive thru, large dance floor and banquet hall. They also doubled the number of tables in the main dining area. Arthur’s now features an indoor and outdoor waterfall, indoor and outdoor seating, a drive thru that is famous for Friday fish fries, and a lounge that hosts live bands every Friday, and Banquet area for 300+ guests.
Since 2013 John & Mary Pat’s daughter, Jennifer & Husband Jack have been running the restaurant. Arthur’s remains a family business and now the Kaul grandchildren are also onboard. The restaurant is currently run with Jack & Jennifer Coppernoll, a head Chef and great line support cooks, a front of the House Manager, and fulltime head bartender.
It is our goal to provide the best possible service to the River Valley area and guests visiting our beautiful town. We strive to support our local communities in every way, and we are proud supporters of many causes in our community and have a special focus on AUTISM and Cancer; both have touched our family personally.
The Round Barn Lodge & Banquet Hall:
Wisconsin alone has approximately 200 round or "round-type" barns.
Folk wisdom attaches superstition to the shape, claiming that the barns were built round so the devil could not find a corner to hide in.
They were modern technology at its finest, being cheaper to build than conventional barns because they used less material and being more resistant to strong winds because gusts were directed around the structure rather than buffeting against the walls.
In 1952, the restaurant was renovated into a full-service restaurant and bar. In 1974, a 27-room lodge was added, designed by James Pfefferkorn, a former Frank Lloyd Wright associate. The two-story lodge wraps around a beautiful wood-domed indoor pool, whirlpool, and sauna.
Since then an adjacent building has been converted into a 3-suite guest house. In 1988, 14 rooms were added to the main lodge, bringing the total number of units to 44. In the early 2000’s, 15 units across the street were added, bringing the total number to 58. These unusually spacious rooms offer king size beds, whirlpool baths and cathedral ceilings.
The lodge is joined to the restaurant by a hall called "The Harvest Room" that accommodates banquets and meetings of up to 150 people.
In 2004, John and Mary Pat Kaul purchased the Round Barn Lodge and Restaurant. An entire face lift of the property was executed, and a beautiful waterfall and patio were added just off the banquet room. In addition to the original updates, most recent changes came in 2016 / 2017 when the family decided to take The Round Barn into the future and has made many changes to Go Green. This includes all new siding and roofing, spray foam insulation throughout the property. We then changed the pool to run on a saltwater system. Updated all washer and dryers to high efficacy and low cold-water units. Changed out faucets to high efficacy and lighting to all LED. A FULL remodel of the banquet hall, rooms, lobby, and game room to the Lodge style of décor. All flat screen TV’s and new beds throughout.
The cupola on the restaurant was once the top of a silo that ran from the ground level to the top of the structure. Through several windows in the ceiling of the restaurant and bar, patrons can look up 50 feet and see the original roof rafters that help make The Round Barn a historic and exciting structure. Onetime local resident, Frank Lloyd Wright, said about The Round Barn, "They don't build them like that anymore".
John, Mary Pat, and the Kaul family owners of Kaul Enterprises which include restaurants, lodging, rentals, property management as well as KCS, an Authorized U.S. Cellular agent. The Kaul’s founded and ran KTI (a manufacturing plant creating satellite antennas and other electronics) for about 20 years before selling the business in 2002. Purchasing Fitzgerald’s of Middleton was their first venture in the restaurant business. Soon after, they also acquired The White House Supper Club & Motel, Arthur’s Supper Club, and the Round Barn Lodge & Restaurant. The Kaul family adventures continued with franchising opportunities, through the Ramada, Super 8, as well as the Tilted Kilt Pub and Eatery.
The Kaul Enterprise headquarters remains at 1450 Veterans Drive in Richland Center, WI. The family is proud to employee local residence and to support the community we live in, including causes that have personally touched our family.
Autism- One of the Kaul’s grandchildren was diagnosed with autism in 1998, and since that time they have made autism & the autism community a priority. The family remains actively engaged in the autism community by increasing awareness as well as supporting families who otherwise might not be able to receive treatment or services.
Cancer- Cancer is also another special cause close to the family’s heart. Each year the company sends a team of employees and other brave souls to be “freezin’ for a reason” in the annual Lee Lake Polar Plunge benefiting G.R.A.C.E. Throughout the year the company hosts & participates in many G.R.A.C.E. events.
Kaul Park- Kaul Park is a community park donated by the family, and is located in Bear Valley. The park serves as a community gathering space that offers private events, fundraisers, and community ball games. The park is open to the public and is a family friendly venue that is cherished by the surrounding communities.
Kaul Cares is a service program designed by the Kaul Family to give back to our local communities. Our family and team are committed to making a difference through volunteering, donations, and support of local nonprofits.