Industry Shows Kinder, Gentler Side —Cagle
Bits and Pieces
SURE, IT’S late February on your calendar. Pitchers and catchers have arrived in Florida, where the sweet, sweet sound of baseballs popping into catchers’ mitts reminds us that spring is right around the corner. Though we’ve experienced a mild winter in the Northeast, everyone always welcomes the opportunity to thaw out and spend some time outside.
But, with PI’s editorial lead time, it is actually just after the first of the year. My body still aches to sleep in until 10 a.m. The kids are still griping about going back to school. I’ve seen the SpongeBob Christmas episode 12 times and can perfectly imitate Patrick Star saying, “Like a genie.” And I’ve gained eight pounds, courtesy of Hershey’s and their Kisses, Miniatures, Chocolate Santas and, of course, the Pot of Gold. I didn’t have a meal the entire 10 days I was off, but the snack level was just overwhelming. Forget sugar plums—Mr. Goodbar was dancing in my head, cutting a rug with Mrs. Godiva.
So, as I attempt to shake off the post-holiday blahs and head for the nearest treadmill, we’ll present a few inspirational stories to put you in the right frame of mind.
CAN (FOOD) THE SYMPATHY: No one is exempt from the cruelties of reality at any time. Once upon a time, the world issued a cease fire during the December holiday season, but that’s gone out the window.
Sunny Industries, of Mazomanie, WI, which had been in receivership since early 2006 and facing lawsuits from GE Capital and CIT Group/Equipment Financing totaling $7 million, closed its doors December 22, according to the Associated Press. It left 380 workers without jobs. Sure, the writing was on the wall, but the timing is still crappy.
While company president Mike Spitz is trying to find a financial backer, a fellow printer is making some provisions for the downtrodden Sunny folks. Royle Printing in neighboring Sun Prairie, WI, is making an effort to cushion the blow for its former print adversary by holding a food drive. The effort culled several hundred dollars worth of grub that was destined for a food bank in Mazomanie.
And from the “...teach them how to fish and feed them for life” department, Royle Printing has brought on seven former Sunny employees.
PLEASANT REMINDER: President Bush’s announcement that another 22,000 troops would be deployed to the Mideast will leave a lot more people yearning to be home again. And one commercial printer is making an effort to provide some solace for its state soldiers who, no doubt, will leave their hearts in the great Northwest.
Employee-owned Shelton-Turnbull, of Eugene, OR, has churned out sets of photo cards to distribute to Oregon National Guard soldiers stationed in Afghanistan. Shelton-Turnbull designed and printed gift sets for the 1,000 National Guard soldiers from the state. The card set, titled “Memories of Home,” features scenic images of Oregon.
According to the printer, the set was produced to show support and recognize the commitment and personal sacrifice that Oregon soldiers are making.
But it wasn’t an easy task to pull off for Shelton-Turnbull. According to Turnbull’s John Boytz, guard troops are not allowed to receive civilian shipments, a practice that dates back to World War II, in an effort to curb soldiers from returning with souvenirs. Relentless in his quest to bring a little home to a harsh, foreign land, Boytz called his state senator, and the cards shipped out in mid-January.
LOOKING GOOD ON PAPER: It should come as no surprise that the History Channel’s “Modern Marvels” series, which last year gave us a tour of the history and usage of ink, has now turned its attention to commercial printing’s other favorite consumable: paper. Neenah Paper, which touts the distinction of developing premium recycled papers almost 20 years ago, will be gathering up some of the spotlight.
Neenah’s sustainable technology was featured in a segment about recycling during the “Environmental Tech” episode that aired January 24. Cue up TiVo or On Demand if you didn’t catch it the first time.
The piece illustrated how Neenah converts 5,000 tons of sludge from its paper brands into steam, electricity and gas aggregate every year. The main purpose is to reduce the load on landfills.