Verona restaurant gets 24-hour makeover ahead of reopening

After winning a WEDC contest, The Sow’s Ear got the funding and the help they needed to redesign their space.
Updated: Jun. 7, 2021 at 7:22 PM CDT
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VERONA, Wis. (WMTV) - A Verona restaurant went through a transformation Monday, receiving a 24-hour makeover with the help of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) and consulting firm Retailworks.

The Sow’s Ear won the WEDC’s inaugural Main Street Mini-Makeover contest, getting funding from the WEDC to paint and redesign their entire space. Staff worked from Monday morning until nearly 5 p.m. to make the changes.

The Sow's Ear in Verona has gone through a transformation today - after winning the WEDC's Main Street Mini-Makeover...

Posted by Sanika Bhargaw NBC15 on Monday, June 7, 2021

General manager Jennifer Davis said some of the biggest changes include repainting the walls and redesigning the countertop and menu displays.

“I believe the biggest change that they’ll see is how open and clean it can look, even though there is more things to see on the walls, our merchandise is more visible and easy to shop now, and it still feels open and welcoming as a space,” Davis explained.

Another major change is that tables are back inside. The Sow’s Ear is reopening Tuesday to in-person dining for the first time since last summer. Davis said staff is excited to welcome customers back into a new and improved space.

“They’ve supported us steadfastly through this pandemic, but I believe that this is bringing something back to them, a little bit more joy infused into our community,” Davis said.

The WEDC has held larger makeover contests for several years, which involve more investment of time and money from the businesses and more serious remodeling. Deputy Secretary Sam Rikkers said they started the Mini-Makeover contest after realizing small businesses could make major changes even with a short amount of time and a few thousand dollars in funding.

“The chambers like the one here in Verona, the businesses like Sow’s Ear, the communities that have kept coming into these businesses through a really tough year is really, is that glue that is keeping our communities vibrant and our businesses strong,” Rikkers said.

The WEDC plans to make the Mini-Makeover an annual event.

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