Sign hoisted home

Alex Doty • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:31 AM

“I think it’s very attractive for this dealership here,” said Cameron MacIntosh, who was watching the sign installation Tuesday morning. “Hopefully, places like this stick around and stuff like this sticks around.”

MacIntosh, who takes U.S. 31 often to go to work, said he stopped Tuesday to see what all of the commotion was about at the dealership.

“I was hoping it wasn’t going away permanently because it always catches your eye and it looks like a piece of history,” he said. “It looks great now. I am glad it is restored and staying around.”

Crews from Postema Signs & Graphics of Grand Rapids spent the past month restoring the sign. They removed it from its pedestal on March 27 after being up for nearly 47 years.

Dan Postmus of Postema sign said the company originally looked at the sign and determined it needed to be restored. After peeking inside, they realized it needed a major overhaul.

“Once we got it back to the shop, we removed all the neon off of it, removed all the panels from it, and got down to the skeleton frame of it and realized how bad the steel really was,” he said.

Postmus said renovations included sandblasting and repairing the metal frame, cleaning and restoring all 32 of the porcelain panels, and installing new electrical components in the sign.

“This is one of those jobs that’s neat and that you’re never going to forget about,” he said.

The sign was originally installed at the site in 1965 at was Miller Chevrolet. Grand Rapids-based Van Houten Signs built it for the dealership. The design was done by Reo Rood — and, as part of the payment for the sign, a 1966 Chevrolet Caprice changed hands.

To read more of this story, see Wednesday’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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