Dealership installs message center — but not for advertising

By Emily Hamann
The Bellingham Business Journal

It’s hard to miss Dewey Griffin Subaru’s latest community project. In October, the Bellingham dealership had digital sign installed in its parking lot that stand 10 feet tall and 20 feet wide. Its overall height is 35 feet.

That makes it the largest sign of its kind in Bellingham, according to The Sign Post, which did the installation.

But if you drive past the sign at its prominent location on Iowa Street, you won’t see photos of Subarus, or prices or other any advertisements.

Dick Meyer, owner of the dealership, intends on using the sign as a community message board.

Charities and other organizations can use the sign to promote fundraisers and local community events.

“We put that sign in for that one purpose,” Meyer said. “The purpose of using it as a community message board.”

Meyer said the sign cost a quarter of million dollars.

“We want to let everyone know what kind of things are happening out there,” Allen Meyer, Dick Meyer’s son and general manager of the dealership, said.

They have put out the call, for any organizations interested in getting their announcement put on the sign to get in touch.

Dick Meyer wanted a similar program when he owned a dealership in Kirkland. But that city wouldn’t allow such a large sign.

“I wanted that big a sign because that gives you a big message,” Dick Meyer said. “How many thousands of cars a day are up and down this street?”

Bellingham did eventually allow the sign, but Dick Meyer said they’ve been planning it for a year and a half.

Ever since it’s been up, they’ve been flooded with positive messages.

“People have been writing letters, thanking us,” Allen Meyer said. “Phone calls, emails. Love the idea. Asking if [they] can get up there. And we’ve said yes, yes, yes.”

This is just the latest project by the dealership to do good in the community. The company is a big supporter of Meals on Wheels and the Whatcom Humane Society. Last year during the holidays, they helped buy presents for 40 needy families.

Dick Meyer said he’d like to other businesses also get more involved with the community.

“I would like to see the businesses in Bellingham do more than they’re doing,” he said.


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