Penny Petrie officially became the owner of the sign shop in New Holstein last July 1, and it has been a whirlwind of activity since then.
“It’s a little crazier than I thought it would be,” Petrie said recently from her shop at 2026 Calumet Dr. (STH 32/57). She pointed to a notebook which includes a long list of jobs she is currently juggling.
But being busy is a very good thing for a business, even if it means some of the projects Petrie would like to do for her own business have to get put on a back burner. One of those jobs is putting up a new sign for her own business as she changed the name after purchasing it from Jim and Barbara Straw. What had been known as JB Signs is now Engelwood Signs.
Engel is her maiden name, and Engelwood Farm is where she grew up. It holds a special place in her heart. “That’s where I learned to work, to be a hard worker,” Petrie said. She has used her artistic talent and training to incorporate a silhouette of the farm into the logo of Engelwood Signs. Now that the weather has improved, Petrie will try to find some time to get the new Engelwood sign installed.
Petrie said she is looking at bringing on some help to assist with the numerous smaller jobs which are keeping her busy. Part of the reason for that busyness is the fact that Engelwood Signs provides such a broad variety of services, from graphic design to vehicle graphics, signs, banners, displays, laser engraving, promotional products, and awards and trophies. On top of that, Petrie’s artistic abilities have her getting approached with numerous “oddball” jobs. “I have a hard time saying no,” Petrie said, adding that she enjoys a challenge.
Petrie earned her associate degree in Marketing from Moraine Park Technical College in Fond du Lac and later her Commercial Art degree from Western Wisconsin Technical College in La Crosse. After a number of years she went on to get her bachelor of arts degree in Education from Silver Lake College in Manitowoc and intended to teach art. While life has taken her in different directions, she said she is still working on possibilities of teaching art even if it is not in a school setting and while still operating Engelwood Signs.
Petrie gained experience working for several other sign companies, including working for JB Signs prior to purchasing
Turn to SIGNS/page 16 B