After much anticipation, the famous Arsenal Lanes has a liquor license placard up on the premises, which means in this case, a Buyer is in the mix. We all know, Arsenal Lanes is an iconic business in Lawrenceville that is a staple to the community. As a previous ‘Lawrenceviller’, Arsenal Lanes was always there for me as a place to meet friends, knock down a few pins (only in Lane 1- who knows why) and have a drink or two.

To give you some history on this establishment, Arsenal Lanes has been in business since 1938; iconic! The business is second generation, run by Mr. Paul Buncher. To pass the torch to the next operator, it was understood that a they had to have a good bowling game, and continue his legacy.

Multiple generations have bowled at Arsenal Lanes, and our company has had multiple generations work with them starting with my father, Ned Sokoloff, sold Arsenal Lanes their liquor license decades ago. Now, my mother, Terri Sokoloff, has been hired to handle the sale of Arsenal Lanes, and I am working on the liquor license transfer with my team.

Specialty Group is a third-generation family owned business, and Pennsylvania’s one-stop-shop for business services provided exclusively for people who own restaurants or those who would like to get into the restaurant industry. Since 1986 Specialty Group has assisted thousands of clients with buying and selling restaurants, liquor licensing and business financing.

According to the press release, Terri Sokoloff, Principal and Broker of Specialty Group says, “We never could have expected Pittsburgh’s reaction to the sale announcement of Arsenal Bowl, our phones were ringing constantly for more information. This establishment is truly an icon in our community and Pittsburghers were worried about losing their tradition of bowling in the heart of Lawrenceville.”

Our company met with more than a dozen buyer groups and received multiple offers. “In the end, we saw the opportunity to “marry” two of the parties to create the ultimate buyer group. One party possessed the hands-on experience of operating a bowling alley while the other party brought the business acumen and management experience necessary to ensure the successful continuation of the Arsenal Bowl the community has come to know and love. Essentially, the two parties were a Cinderella and the glass slipper perfect fit,” says Sokoloff.

My team at Specialty Group is also handling the license transfer, which we expect to go through swiftly so the new Buyers can get their feet on the ground running this renowned business. I’m sure when you walk down Butler Street you will see the orange poster in their window. When an orange poster goes up, we know the transaction has started to move along.

What does this mean for the future of Arsenal? Simple, a continuation of this legendary business. Make sure to continue to support Arsenal Lanes during this transition!

As we continue this process, continue to stay tuned for more articles that will feature upcoming details on new restaurants and bars coming to Pittsburgh.

This content was provided by a local, independent contributor to Made in PGH, a lifestyle blog.
Sidney Sokoloff

Sidney is a born and raised Pittsburgh'er, also known as @therestaurantbrokerpgh. He is a foodie/influencer, Vice President of Specialty Group and a Crossfit Level 2 Trainer at Renegade Training. Sidney spends a majority time working at his family company, Specialty Group, that opens up bars and restaurants and has a passion in continuing to develop Pittsburgh's growing restaurant scene.

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