Sign of the Times


(Photo above: Laurie and Rick Hetherington, MC Smith Signs – Bend | Photos by Natalie Nieman)

From Redmond to Prineville to Bend, there is a barely a business whose sign wasn’t designed, manufactured and installed by the Dana Signs and Graphic Group. Along with his wife and business partner, Laurie, Rick Hetherington, President and CEO of the company are continuing the legacy of a local, family owned business who serve the Central Oregon community and beyond.

History in the Making

MC Smith Signs was started in Bend in 1975 by Mike Smith. Smith grew his business and moved to their current location on Second and Olney in 2010. As part of the relocation, they added CNC machining, a process in which pre-programmed computer software dictates the movement of factory tools and machinery. Large format printing was also added to their in house production capabilities.

Dana Signs started in Redmond in the 90’s. It was purchased by Brent and Judy Grenfell in 2002. The Grenfells grew the business and moved to the current site on Umatilla Ave. in the Redmond Airport Industrial park. The Dana Shirt Shop was added in 2014 as a natural extension of the business. Brent and Judy Grenfell purchased MC Smith Signs (above) in 2016.

Hetherington came to Bend via Pennsylvania in 1993 when he was asked to be the production manager for the Pozzi Window division of JELD-WEN, who had just purchased Bend Millworks. Hetherington continued working for JELD-WEN for 30 years and relocated with the company a few times to Klamath Falls, Charlotte, North Carolina and back to Bend. After retiring from JELD WEN, Hetherington had been working as an independent industry consultant while searching for a solid business opportunity in Central Oregon. With his back ground in manufacturing, engineering and overseeing national operations of a large company — Dana Signs was the perfect fit. The rest is well, history…

Around Town

The variety of signage that Dana Signs has done in our community can be literally seen all over town.

Sign Business/Window Graphics: exterior signage for professional and government offices, restaurants, pubs and any kind of small business.

Notable signage in Bend: 900 Wall, Pine Tavern, Cascade Lakes Distillery, Brother Jon’s Ale House, Pizza Mondo, Project Bike and Kanpai Sushi and Airlink.

Notable signage in Redmond: Diego’s Spirited Kitchen, Redmond Proficiency Academy, Advantage Dental and Brasada Ranch.

In 2011, Dana Signs designed, fabricated and installed the Welcome to Redmond arch that now serves as a focal point for downtown Redmond.

Real Estate Signs: standard sales and property signage for Real Estate Brokers.

Notable real estate signage: Pahlisch Homes, Cascade Sotheby’s, Hassons, Tetherow, Broken Top, Eagle Crest, Brasada Ranch and Pronghorn amongst others.

Vehicle Graphics: design, fabrication and install service on commercial and government vehicles.

Notable vehicle graphics: Deschutes County Sherriff’s Department, Deschutes County facilities, Redmond Police, Sunriver police, Wanderlust Tours, Robberson Ford and Central Electric Coop. Dana Signs also provides vehicle graphics for many of the builders and trades in Central Oregon.

Decal Signs: used for many applications for businesses such as interior walls and windows.

Notable decal signage: Truck and tank stickers for Ed Staub and Son’s propane, Fuel gauge decals for CiES Aviation, equipment decals for TCS Rock Tough soil screens, packaging stickers for Ida’s Cupcakes and Boxwood Kitchens and product and display graphics for Expion 360 lithium power cells.

Additionally, Dana Signs provides services for business message boards, product decals and employee wearables.

Keeping it Local

Keeping things in the community is very important to the Dana Signs staff. “We want to live local, play local, buy local and support the local business and nonprofit organizations in Bend, Redmond and Central Oregon,” says Hetherington.

Dana Signs is a member of the Redmond and Bend Chamber of Commerce, EDCO and Opportunity Knocks organizations. The Hetherington’s and the company are also heavily involved with OAS (Oregon Adaptive Sports), a local nonprofit that ensures children and adults with disabilities are able to enjoy an active lifestyle with equipment specifically designed for certain handicaps. Laurie is active as a member of the Board of Directors for CODSN (Central Oregon Disability Support Network).

Moving Forward

While the company has enjoyed sustained growth and several milestones over the past five years, such as being named Redmond Chamber Business of the year in 2017 and acquiring MC Smith Signs — there is always a lot to look forward to.

“This year, there will be expanded collaboration with other Central Oregon based businesses that will allow us to enhance our product portfolio with new designs and additional materials,” says Hetherington. “For example we are collaborating with three Bend companies — Simply Fabricated Metal Fabricators, Commercial Powder Coating and Triumph Outpost leather products, to incorporate metal, composite and leather details for the mechanical and wayfinding signage for the new Huntington Lodge at Pronghorn,” he adds.

Dana Signs is also expanding their graphic design services to integrate business logos and messages across all the varied sign, display and decal mediums and materials.


About Author

Julie Furnas CBN Feature Writer

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