Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Weekend Blog - The S.S. Milwaukee Clipper

We seem to have taken a bit of a maritime swing here for the last few weeks, so today...we'll head back to the shores of Lake Michigan in Muskegon Mi and tell you the condensed story of the SS Milwaukee Clipper.

Originally built in 1904 and christened the Juniata this magnificent ship sailed the Great Lakes from Buffalo New York and Duluth Minnesota bringing the "huddled masses" of immigrants to America to that part of the country long before the roads were capable of getting them there.  They were in search of the American Dream.  She ran that route until 1915 under the Pennsylvania Railroad.  The Panama Canal Act saw her sold by the Pennsylvania Rail Road Company but she still sailed another 20 seasons until 1937 when she was shuttered at the conclusion of the Chicago Worlds Fair.

In 1940, she was extensively modernized and became a passenger ship and car ferry on Lake Michigan and she sailed 29 more years under the new name The S.S. Milwaukee Clipper.  She made two, sometimes three round trips a day at a whopping 18 knots.  7 hours each way and when the 4th boiler was fired up...the could make the trip in 6 hours.   In 1971 her she sailed the last regular route.

Today, she is a National Landmark and maritime museum with a volunteer crew working to restore her little by little and offering tours on board from Memorial Day to Labor Day.  Her last captain Bob Priefer is on the board of directors and oversees the repair, the fundraising and holds a life time of memories on board the ship.

The Milwaukee Clipper Captain Bob Priefer
If you are even in the area, take a few minutes to walk her quarters, you'll see history with your own eyes of a long gone era, proudly housed in Muskegon Michigan.

If you'd like to know more, click on the image below to visit the Milwaukee Clipper website.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

The Company That Plays Together - The Weekend Blog

At United Sign, we spend a lot of time working together.  We also spend a good amount of time playing together and keeping up with all the goings on inside and outside of work.

It’s the team mentality that has been one of our greatest assets.  We take time to have a formal weekly meeting, a monthly birthday lunch celebrating everyone who turned another year older and of course, holiday parties and company picnics.  We take our business serious and those who make it run well equally as serious and we welcome everyone’s participation in planning events and adding their own special twist to the good time.

Not everything is a huge expense, not everyone makes it to everything, but…we operate as a family and we enjoy taking a minute to recognize the importance of everyone’s role!

Our annual golf outing was held a week or so ago, and as far as weekend blogs go, we thought we’d share some of the smiling faces that make United Sign such a great place.  Our thanks to the outstanding people you will see pictured.  We appreciate all you do!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Flex Face Graphics From United Sign

Ok, today...we want to let you in on a secret!

Maybe you have an older back light sign, and quite honestly, it's seen better days!  We're going to show you how to breathe new life into it afford-ably, vibrantly and with a lasting solution to your image!!

The product is called "Flex Face" and, honestly it's one of those products they should put on "How It's Made".  It's a flexible fabric, it fits into your sign cabinet or awning and there is a process called the "Proper 3 Process" where your logo is printed, a layer of white ink is applied and then  your logo again.

The results are remarkable.  The image is lasting and the price, well.... you can't beat it.

Take a look at this video explaining the process.

It's an affordable way to spruce up your image and it's a product that will last you for years to come!

Click on out logo below to contact us for a "Quick Quote".  We'll be happy to show you how much of an improvement can be made.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Chef Prize - The Beauty of Giving Back

Yesterday, an inaugural event was held at the breathtaking Hampton Green Farm in Fruitport Michigan called Chef Prize!  It might have been a little chilly to start, but as the day unfolded it did warm up a bit and a great time was had by all who attended. 
The food was exquisite, the setting was perfect and the cause was one that brought a community together.  None of the participating restaurants were paid to be there.  They even provided the food they sampled.

Photo courtesy Shelley Irwin/Facebook

Our local hospital, Hackley Hospital has a branch called Hackley Community Care and they make getting medical care for those who are uninsured or under-insured possible, and they do it by going directly to the neighborhoods they serve.  This time around, it’s a teen health center in the Oakridge neighborhood of Muskegon. The amazing statistics of just how great the need for teen health care was the focus of the day and being a fund raiser great attention was given to some facts that most people just don’t know about health care.

Photo courtesy Shelley Irwin/ Facebook
From our end, we worked to provide some of the banners, imaging and items that drew attention to the event and we pooled our resources to help Hackley Community Care and Hampton Green Farm with a small media tour of radio and television stations in the area to talk about the event.  We also leveraged our social media reach to help spread the word.   It’s a great feeling to know that the connections you have made over the years can pay off when something as important as the health of our kids is concerned.
Photo Courtesy Shelley Irwin/Facebook

We were honored to be a part of this great event and humbled by the opportunity to give back to the community that has so greatly blessed all of us.  On the way out, there was plenty of talk about Chef Prize 2016 and I have to wonder what the chef’s will dream up next year for this incredible event.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

The Weekend Blog - The LST 393

Last week, we told you a little bit about one of the treasures in our home town of Muskegon Michigan the USS Silversides!  That’s not the only historic maritime attraction here!  We’d like to introduce you to the LST 393 as well.

Photo Courtesy LST 393 dot org

The LST 393 is moored in Downtown Muskegon and serves as another tribute to our “greatest generation”.  She served in WWII in the European theater and is credited with 30 round trips to Omaha Beach on D-Day.  Once her time in Europe was completed, she was heading for Japan via the Panama Canal when the war ended in September of 1945.  She is only one of two LST Class ships left in its original configuration… one of two out of 1050 ships like her built.  Needless to say, she’s a treasure.  You can click on the picture for their website!

Today, the LST 393 serves as a museum, and has been painstakingly restored to her grey paint scheme.  She had been camouflaged for the trip to Japan when the war ended.  You will find a lot of interesting artifacts, events in and on top of the ship and walking her decks you can see what the crew saw day in and day out on board.  A few years ago, I took my dad on a walk thru of it as he served on an LST class that had been modified into a repair ship for the Vietnam War.  It was a great honor to see that ship through his eyes.  He remembered every door and here it led.

Like the USS Sliversides, I did a video about the LST a few years back.  If you’d like a short tour.  Have a look.   

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Adhesive Prints From United Sign

An adhesive print might not be an everyday thought to you, but there are a lot of applications for adhesive prints that you might not be aware of.   If you’ll indulge us for a second, we’ll tell you a little about some of the latest products we offer to help your brand or team stand out.

Event-Trac is one of our favorites as this product has almost limitless abilities to accentuate your event and give you a new and unique platform for your sponsors.  Event-Trac is a durable, but temporary decal that can be applied to cement or asphalt surfaces.  The colors are vivid, the message is bold and you have a new direction to grab some attention in a non-traditional location.  Need to send people to the food and drink area?  How about restroom directions?  Maybe a large print at the entrance as a “welcome mat” if you will?  Event-Trac is an eye catching way to  be noticed!

One Way Vision is beneficial in more ways than one.  One Way Vision adheres to windows and makes your entire store front an eye popping attraction showcasing your products, your people and your business personality. Along with the outward message, on the inside, One Way Vision helps keep direct sunlight out and might even drop the need for cooling costs in the summer.  You can still see everything going on outside with the micro perforated material it’s made of and you’ll add a splash to your store front.

One Way Vision
Vehicle Wraps and Graphics give you mobile advertising 24/7.  Think of your vehicle fleet and the miles they accumulate over the years.  They are in and out of destinations around town, they are widely seen on the road and they can boldly carry your business pertinent information like what business you are in, your contact information and your website.  Highly effective and doesn’t keep you to one area or store front to share your message.

Vehicle Wrap
QuickStick is similar to a magnet or sticker, but are much more versatile. It is made of a fabric based adhesive, allowing it to stick to multiple surfaces and be reused without wearing or damaging the surface it's applied to. Unlike a sticker, once you apply QuickStick, it can be removed and reapplied to another location. QuickStick offers the convenience and reusability of magnets, but sticks to virtually any surface - not just metal! It is a perfect application for walls or windows.

Indoor floor graphics add to your sponsor able assets by making your floor space and first line of sight come alive with team spirit messages, sponsor or league information or additional contact info.  They are not just for sports either, malls, stores, business that have large areas that people need direction in….all can be serviced with beautiful and vibrant floor graphics.   

Floor Graphics
Wall Paper and Wall Wraps can define a business.  Your imagination is really the limit with what we can do with wall paper and wall wraps.  Would you like an entire city scape?  Maybe you’d like a calm and serene setting for your lobby?  Would you like to showcase “the good old days”?  We can help make that happen.  Bring us your idea and we’ll find a way to make your fantasy room come true.

Wall Wrap

As you can see, we’ve done the homework.  We’ve got the tools and what we need is your imagination.  Click on the link to see the latest in all you’ve read about.  We’ll be happy to help your image stand out in any way you choose.  

Call your United Sign representative today to discuss your needs and we'll help you find a solution!  You can also click on the photo below for a Quick Quote on any of our great products.