Becky Vinz is a 24-year-old aspiring photographer who grew up in Horicon and currently pours at Bomb Shelter, 1517 S. 2nd St.
Since 2008, the Walker’s Point bar has served up hundreds of different beers -- they currently have 344 to choose from -- in vintage glassware from the ‘70s and ‘80s. The retro decor also includes tons of beer-related nostalgia items from a time when Brew City really was Brew City.
Vinz has been working at the Bomb Shelter every Monday night -- and sometimes other nights, too -- for about a year. She says it reminds her of small-town taverns that she visited as a kid with her parents, which is exactly what owner Greg Landig was going for with his kitschy and stylized Bomb Shelter.
"How lucky am I that I get to work at my favorite bar?" asks Vinz.
OnMilwaukee.com: What do you like about working here?
Becky Vinz: I make a lot of friends here. I really like everybody. And as long as I have someone to talk to, I never get bored.
OMC: What drink do you like to make the most?
BV: I pour a lot of beer here. I really like it when people like the same beers that I do. It’s fun to talk about.
OMC: What beers do you like?
BV: I like a hoppy IPA or a really good stout. If I’m not drinking beer, I like a double Jameson press.
OMC: What’s the worst -- or best -- hook-up line you have ever heard from behind the bar?
BV: I think the worst are also the most obvious. I’ve heard people get right to the point and just say, "Wanna come home with me tonight?" I guess it never hurts to ask, but it’s not very creative either.
OMC: Have you ever cleaned up puke?
BV: No. That doesn’t happen here very much.
OMC: How would you describe Bomb Shelter customers?
BV: There are a lot of regulars. But then nights like tonight, there’s a lot of random people here, which is really fun, too. You can walk in here and talk to anyone at any time. It’s really friendly.
OMC: If you’re not working or hanging out at Bomb Shelter, where do you like to go?
BV: I live on Brady Street, so I go to bars over there. I used to hang out at Thurman’s a lot. I went there for the bartenders, not for the Grateful Dead music.
OMC: You’re from Horicon, so what brought you to Milwaukee?
BV: I came here six years ago to attend MATC. I have a degree in photography.
OMC: What do you think of the decor, specifically all of the old-school beer signs and such?
BV: I love it. My parents have property in the Ladysmith area in a town with about 100 people and six bars. So, we spent a lot of time going to bars, and some of them remind me of this place. The owner, Greg, says he has always been a bit of a hoarder and he collected all of this stuff through eBay and antique stores and friends.
OMC: When you’re not tending bar, what do you like to do?
BV: I like taking street photos a lot, of random people and things. I would like to work as an editorial photographer someday. I also really like to cook. I bring in food here, like tequila-infused salsa or cookies. It helps bribe people to come in and visit me while I’m working.
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.