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|Articles - March 2010|
|Thursday, February 25, 2010|
Colorful samples of velour curtains, lighting tracks and pulley systems in Stagecraft Industries’ offices are hints to the company’s work: producing the backstage infrastructure that makes the magic of musicals and plays across the Northwest.
There are no relics from this stage manufacturing company’s history that began with building sets and scenery for vaudeville shows. Stagecraft now manufactures the permanent parts of auditoriums and stages including curtains, orchestra pits, rigging and pulley systems for lighting and other backstage equipment typically not seen by audiences.
Getting its start as the Stagecraft Shop in 1921, the switch from vaudeville sets to auditorium stages was made when the demand for vaudeville tanked along with employment numbers during the Great Depression. In 1960, Stagecraft Industries was created out of a merger between Stage Craft Shop and Northern School Supply, a school supply firm.
Sales manager Kevin Shetterly says Stagecraft is able to celebrate its 50th anniversary this year because of a diversity of clients — mainly schools, but also TV studios and performance centers — and a three-year backlog of projects. Stagecraft manufactures stage equipment for 300 different clients each year and does $10 million to $14 million in sales.
Follow Shetterly through a wide and heavy wooden door — after putting on a pair of “goofy glasses” for safety — and the smells of dust and metal that has been cut, welded, and sanded wafts through a large manufacturing plant. In one corner destined for the auditorium of Pierce College in Tacoma, Wash., are 12 tension grids on which lighting technicians stand to direct stage lights during musical and theatrical performances.
All are hand woven on site. Shetterly says what sets Stagecraft apart as a business is that it manufactures its products with its own seamstresses, metal workers and engineers. Stagecraft also sends installation managers to oversee and install the equipment.
Stages and auditoriums, Shetterly says, “are an important aspect of any educational facility.” The most satisfying part of Shetterly’s job is knowing that Stagecraft’s product is going to be used for graduations, musical and theater performances. Maybe even vaudeville.
Friday, July 10, 2015
BY JACOB PALMER
Most of the food Americans consume is trucked in from hundreds of miles away. Eric Wilson, co-founder and CEO of Gro-volution, wants to change that. So this past spring, the Air Force veteran and former greenhouse manager started work on an alternative farming system he claims is more efficient than conventional agriculture, and also shortens the distance between the consumer and the farm.
Wednesday, June 03, 2015
As part of our green workplaces story, Oregon Business checked out a community service project undertaken by Portland Youth Builders, a nonprofit alternative high school. In partnership with Whole Foods, PYB built garden boxes for a Home Forward housing site. Home Forward is a government agency that provides housing for low income residents and people with disabilities.
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Oregon's roads are crumbling, and revenues from state and local gas taxes are not sufficient to pay for improvements. We asked readers if the private sector should help fund transportation maintenance and repairs. Research partner CFM Strategic Communications conducted the poll of 366 readers in February.
"I feel private enterprises are capable of operating at a higher efficiency than state government."
"This has been used in Oregon since the mid-1800s. It is not a new financing method. This form of financing may help Oregon close its infrastructure deficit by leveraging funds."
Monday, June 22, 2015
The Clean Fuels/gas tax trade off will go down in history as another disjointed, on-again off-again approach to city and state lawmaking.
Monday, July 13, 2015
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Holding a Power Lunch at Veritable Quandary in downtown Portland.
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Charlie Hales has long viewed sound urban planning as the route to salvation: social, economic and environmental. This week, the mayor's city design philosophy got the nod of approval from a bona fide spiritual authority, Pope Francis.
Monday, July 13, 2015
BY KIM MOORE
A conversation with Greg Lambert, president of Mid Oregon Personnel Services.
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