Laacke and Joy’s Company in Milwaukee has been an outdoor outfitter in Wisconsin longer than Wisconsin has been a state.
There are several types of sporting goods stores.
Some sell hunting equipment and heavy but durable camping equipment that you can take to a cabin in your car but would never carry far by foot. Some sporting goods stores sell bowling balls and basketball shoes in a mall. Still others sell the type of equipment you would carry if you were to go camping in the wilderness for a week or climb a mountain. More of an extreme sports outfitter.
Laacke and Joy’s is more of an extreme sporting good store specializing in:
- Alpine Skiing
- Nordic Skiing
- Backpacking and Hiking
They sell outdoor clothing and footwear that uses the latest in materials and designs. The clothing they sell is designed to keep you warmer when it’s extremely cold, dry when it is wet outside, and to be light while extremely durable.
You will find the top outdoor clothing manufacturers like:
- The North Face
- Mountain Hardware
At Laacke and Joy’s in Milwaukee you also find footwear for men and women as well as youth sizes by:
They also have a large selection of kayaks and kayaking accessories and equipment. I’ve done some canoeing and rafting but if you have the choice, a kayak is the way to go.
They have several kayak brands:
- Jackson Kayak
- Wilderness Systems
For snowboarding and skiing they have a huge selection of brands including:
- Lib Tech
They have all the boots, polls, bindings, and snowboard and ski accessories too. They have the roof racks and car carriers you’ll need to get your snowboard to the ski hill during the winter and your kayak to the water in summer.
Laacke and Joy’s is one of my favorite places to stop at in Milwaukee.
I like outdoor gear and they have all the best brands like Osprey, North Face, and MSR. I don’t camp very often but I use a backpack for all the things I need to take with me and like to buy one that lasts and is comfortable. Often, I find that a coat designed for winter sports is a lot better for Wisconsin winters than fashionable clothes that are either too heavy or not warm enough. I also know what I buy at Laacke and Joy’s will most likely last longer and will be designed better. It’s had to beat gear like Osprey backpacks and their All Mighty Guarantee. The outdoor gear and clothing at Laacke and Joy’s is gear you can trust.
The Milwaukee location is great. The four story building has two floors of gear and clothing. The location on Water Street makes it an easy stop from anywhere downtown. There is free parking right in front of the building. It makes it an easy stop even if you just have a few minutes.
It’s a fun place for me. I’ll tell my wife I am stopping and she’ll warn me not to spend any money. Usually, when I tell her what I found, we go and spend even more money together. We both appreciate quality. You do not want to miss their clearance items and sales. You can save a lot of money over even some of the manufacturer’s outlet stores.
Laacke and Joy’s Company is Milwaukee’s oldest retailer and manufacturer.
It’s also one of the oldest in the state of Wisconsin. It’s roots go back to 1844 at a ship chandlery (tools and supplies for ships) and sail loft. It has changed names and hands a few times through the years but is still in business. The top floors of the four story Milwaukee location are still used to manufacture custom sewn items (often for other companies). They manufacture all sorts of thing from backpacks to parking meter covers.
They also have two other locations besides the downtown Milwaukee building. One is in Brookfield, WI and the other in Mequon, WI. Most of their business is retail but they have recently redone their website and are seeing more online sales. I still suggest stopping at the store in person. It’s the best way to find that perfect coat, the right snowboard, or the best deal. The staff is always there to help but never pushy.