By Janee Law
To Joe Forgione, it was very important that the marquee above soon-to-be-open S.T.A.G.S. Tap House puts the downtown-Huntington gastropub’s specialty front and center: Beer.
To do that, Forgione and co-owners Jeff States and Mike Garbeeian recruited an artist to design a logo, and then visited Huntington Station specialty shop Signarama to have a marquee created.
The result? A 16-by-4-foot wooden marquee sporting a resin deer head with beer taps for antlers.
The deer head is reflective of the name of the gastropub, which is expected to open on Main Street next month. The S.T.A.G.S. name itself actually doubles in meaning, with each letter representing one of the co-owner’s children.
With amber LED lighting, the marquee brings a spark to the 308 Main St. storefront, which will soon offer new American cuisine, 40 craft beers on tap and 30 different types of bottled beer.
The amber lighting, resin and wood backdrop also illuminate the gastropub’s rustic feel, Forgione said.
“We wanted to add some rustic charm through the sign so people can see it kind of all flows into that rustic feeling inside,” he added.
To do that, Signarama owners Dawn Tiritter-Bent and Michael Ziccardi took this project head on with 10 of their employees, completing the project in about five weeks.
Tiritter-Bent said the wood was reclaimed from a tobacco barn in West Virginia and placed onto a support frame. In addition, Tiritter-Bent found an art gallery in California that sent over an all-white resin deer head to give the marquee its 3D attention-grabber.
Signarama custom painted the deer head in metallic paint finishes, cut the antlers off and then modified them to accommodate the beer taps, which were donated by an employee’s father, a bar owner. The beer taps were also modified to accommodate the S.T.A.G.S. trademark
“If you can see the taps up close, we created S.T.A.G.S. brands of beer and custom labeled all those taps,” Tritter-Bent said. One of them is S.T.A.G.S. Ale, and another one is S.T.A.G.S. Amber, which is “pretty cool” she added.
Signarama also halo lit the marquee’s letters, which results in the amber LED illuminating the backing wood. The amber LED is also embedded in the antlers as well.
Forgione especially likes this, he said, “It almost looks like the wood is actually burning.”
Tiritter-Bent, whose store has been around for 28 years, said the project is one of her favorites.
It’s “probably one of the projects I am most proud of because of its unique manufacturing and lighting effects. It was a tremendous project for everybody to work on together.
“We love that sign.”
Forgione commended Signarama’s staff for their efforts.
He said, “They just took the
logo to the next level and really wanted to make the sign something special.
“They are amazing people.”