Northern Michigan University alumnus Mark Pynnonen ('83 BS) has won two consecutive runner-up Project of the Year awards for signage and graphics work that his Signs Now Marquette franchise completed for Wildcat Athletics. The honored work includes large window graphics and backlit brushed-aluminum letters on the exterior of the Berry Events Center. Signs Now Marquette also completed a composite of signage and banners for various athletic facilities.
Pynnonen and NMU alumna Jennifer Bell ('10 BFA), Signs Now Marquette graphic designer, attended Alliance Franchise Brands’ February 2018 convention in Las Vegas, Nev. Signs Now Marquette’s staff is composed of several NMU graduates and students.
“I was surprised and happy to be runner-up,” said Pynnonen. “The banners and signage entered in the competition this year were large, especially those in the Dome that were 16 feet by 32 feet in size. The installation was the most challenging aspect of the whole process. Some banners were placed 50-feet up.”
The most recent Project of the Year submission included the following: two mesh banners for the soccer field; a new sign and logo on the soccer building; new Fit Zone entrance signs; composite team schedules posted on and off campus; team photos and schedules for most sports; and pole banners located around the athletic facilities. At the Berry Events Center, large banners were installed at the two main concourse entrances and graphics were added to the main ticket office and hockey locker room. In the Superior Dome, banners were installed near the end zones, in the main concourse and in the main tunnel entrances.
Signs Now Marquette is a franchise of Alliance Franchise Brands, which links more than 625 locations in North America and the United Kingdom. Alliance Franchise Brands hosts a yearly convention attended by franchises representing its sign and graphics divisions. Alliance Franchise Brands and Wide Format & Signage Magazine, a national trade publication, sponsor the Project of the Year.
Pynnonen also serves as president of the NMU Foundation Board of Trustees.