As Galloping Ghost expanded its reach – from videogame production studio to videogame arcade to martial arts gym to pinball arcade to auto repair garage – founder and president Doc Mack leased commercial space after commercial space from Steven Campbell.
By the time Campbell died in February 2021 at the age of 71, Galloping Ghost-branded businesses were housed in multiple buildings Mack leased from Campbell along the south side of Ogden Avenue between Maple and Blanchan avenues.
“Working with Steve was great, because he just jumped in and helped. Everything was like clockwork,” said the 46-year-old Mack in a phone interview with the Landmark last week. “Once he wasn’t around, it was a new learning experience without him championing everything along.”
It would take more than two years, but on April 17, Mack’s firm Galloping Ghost Holding LLC completed what was easily the largest one-time real estate purchase on Ogden Avenue in living memory.
In the $3 million deal, Galloping Ghost Holdings acquired 19 parcels spread over 13 addresses on Ogden Avenue from a real estate trust that formed part of Campbell’s estate. The purchase includes nearly all of the buildings housing Galloping Ghost businesses and three parking lots, two of them on Ogden Avenue and one in the 4100 block of Blanchan Avenue.
“It was a big step,” said Mack, who opened Galloping Ghost Arcade in 2010 with 120 games. It has since expanded to include more than 930 games. Another expansion, into the former Canton Restaurant space at 9409 Ogden Ave., east of the arcade, will get Galloping Ghost ever closer to Mack’s goal of 1,000 games.
“Through all this time we did it without any real debt, so this was a pretty monumental thing,” he said. “It’s motivated all of the people working here to keep going, because there’s so much more we want to do.”
Brookfield Village Manager Timothy Wiberg said Mack’s purchase of the Ogden Avenue properties shows Ogden Avenue can be attractive for businesses.
“We’re happy he’s shown confidence in the Brookfield market and community to have invested that heavily in it,” Wiberg said. “It demonstrates businesses can succeed and thrive there. Hopefully he’ll expand his enterprises here in Brookfield.”
The parcels Galloping Ghost Holdings purchased in April include all of the land along the south side of Ogden Avenue between Maple and Arthur avenues, all but two parcels on the south side of Ogden Avenue between Raymond and Deyo avenues and the Galloping Ghost Garage building at the southeast corner of Ogden and Blanchan.
And he may not be done.
“We do want to acquire more properties, because we want to add parking,” said Mack. “That’s one of the things we’ve been lacking. We know that’s a concern of the neighbors, and we want to make sure it’s not an imposition on them.”
Mack said there were two Campbell-owned properties he’s interested in buying as well as the building at 9403 Ogden Ave., the only property Mack does not own on that stretch of Ogden between Raymond and Deyo.
That property was not Campbell-owned and half of it houses Galloping Ghost Reproductions, a print shop Mack uses to produce artwork for arcade game cabinets among other things.
Mack would eventually like to move the Galloping Ghost Pinball Arcade, which is housed at 9211 Ogden Ave., to the 9400 block of Ogden Avenue.
To do that, Mack said he has floated constructing two additional stories above the arcade, which could accommodate the pinball games, a videogame and networked computer LAN center dedicated to console and PC gaming and a videogame museum.
The zoning code allows for buildings in the C-1 district, where the arcade sits, to be three stories (45 feet) by right.
“If we can afford it, it’s up to code,” Mack said of the idea.
Mack said that over the years, other towns and counties have offered to relocate Galloping Ghost, but the lifelong Brookfield resident said he wasn’t really interested.
“I’ve been living here my whole life,” he said. “I couldn’t think of being anywhere else.”