In 1917, two interesting things happened… Prohibition was proposed (and eventually went into effect) AND Perlick Corporation, a fifth-generation, family-owned manufacturer of bar and beverage systems, refrigeration, and brewery fittings, opened its doors for business. Through Prohibition and well beyond, Perlick remained open for business, and it continues to be a success story. We’ll drink to that!
UE was hired to create and host a 100th Anniversary celebration that welcomed 800 employees, retirees and guests. Bringing this exclusive group together in a picnic area at the Milwaukee County Zoo during its busiest summer weekend was a mammoth feat that required an eagle’s eye to detail as well as innovative planning by UE. The lion’s share of the work included dressing up the rustic, natural setting to capture the Perlick look and feel; offer a delightful space for guests to reconnect, mingle and revel in the storied history of their company; and provide the crowd with plentiful opportunities to feast on excellent food, tasty beverages and family-friendly activities.
The first order of business was creating a generous white picket “enclosure” that kept out the zoo’s wild beasts while also showcasing the gathering place created just for Perlick visitors. Within that space, animal print table runners topped picnic tables, and tented areas and tables, ablaze with Perlick-red signage and animal and jungle prints, directed attendees to the day’s amenities. Everyone’s favorite summertime foods – ribs, hamburgers and hot dogs, ice cream, and corn-on-the-cob complete with canisters of different salt flavors hanging nearby kept the Perlick guests well-fed.
Beverages were served from the zoo’s existing pavilion, which, although functional, lacked pizazz. UE came to the rescue. Many of the existing surfaces and tents found new life when wrapped in custom-printed scrims, or mesh sheeting that was covered in the theme’s patterns. To disguise the zoo’s existing beer tappers, UE built sleek surrounds that encased them in the Perlick logo. Behind the bar area, historic ads encapsulated Perlick’s longevity and added an intimate feel to the utilitarian space.
When a company has been in business for a century, it’s employees and retirees range widely in age, and UE was privileged to provide a high-touch welcome to everyone, ensuring all of the guests were well-cared for and always knew how to access all of the activities available throughout the day. One of those activities was a custom-built green-screen photo booth that featured four creative backgrounds for grinning visitors to pose in vintage Perlick advertisements and zoo-themed backgrounds. It kept the Perlick family laughing the entire day, and allowed them to keep a warm memory of this magnificent milestone.