History of Gay and Lesbian Life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin - People - Bios

George Prentice


approx. Nov. 1948
Primary Involvements:

Bar/ Business owner
Community leader and activist





George Prentice.

In 1976 George partnered with Jim Seeboth to open the Club Circus disco bar, which had been transformed from the previous Gary's dance bar. George and Jim sold out their interest in Circus in October 1978. At the time, George said he wanted to go into racing!

In 1983, George opened Auctioneer's Inn II in Elm Grove, which had previously been known as the old Left Guard Restaurant. (Both Auctioneer's Inn II (and its connected QuickSilver Nightclub), and the original Auctioneer's Inn in Kansasville, WI, were gay owned and operated- the original being owned by 'Colonel Hope', a woman who had been in the Army and was an accomplished autioneer.)

Auctioneer's Inn II only remained in business for about 6 months-- George had something else in mind. He transplanted the brass bank entrance that had been in the Auctioneer's, and installed it at the corner entrance of 2nd and National, into a building he had obtained to house his new project: the LaCage Aux Folles gay dance bar. Opened in April 1984, LaCage was to consume much of his and his partner Corey Grubb's attention for the next 20 years.

Upon its opening, LaCage was the first bar with large windows open to the street. Although the dance area was not large, the location and timing was excellent, and La Cage quickly took dominance of the gay dance scene, largely helped by DJ Tony Aiello, who presided as DJ at La Cage for almost 20 years. La Cage quickly overtook Club 219 as the city's premier gay dance bar, and over the next few years competing venues such as Factory II closed; and it kept a good and loyal share of the dance crowd market as dance venues such as Kisses, Factory III, and others came and went.

In 1986, George conceived the idea of MAPFest, as a way for the community to support the fledgling Milwaukee AIDS Project (MAP), a.k.a., ARCW (AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin). The concept was to make it a celebration of health and diversity which could attract gay as well as understanding or sympathetic/ supportive non-gay people. The first MAPFest was held on Labor Day, Monday September 1st, 1986, in the blocked off S. 2nd Street between National and Walker Sts.; directly fronting or backing on 4 major LGBT clubs/bars at the time: Mint Bar II, La Cage, Hot Legs, and the YP/ Your Place.

On November 1, 2005, after nearly 20 years, George and Corey sold the bar and retired to sunny Florida. New owners Michael and Kris took over the reins and re-adopted the old "La Cage" name.


George Prentice's 43rd birthday, Nov. 1991
(In Step, vol. 8 no. 24, pg. ?)

Photo: Corey Grubb and George Prentice at LaCage, Sept. 1992
(In Step, vol. 9 no. 19, pg. 74)

Advertisement in Oct. 1978 explaining ownership change
(Milw. Calendar vol 1 no. 18, pgs. 10-11)

Credits: information and photo contributed by ;
Website creation and design by Don Schwamb;
Last updated: October-2009.