Here is another in our series of articles about things going on around Rochester. Enjoy.
While 2014 ended on a relatively mild note in terms of temperatures in upstate NY, the weather in recent weeks has exemplified the tough winters that Rochester is famous for. With temperatures dropping into the negatives and several feet of snow piling up, it is no surprise that many people in the area are ready for spring. However, the Auto Stop, located at the corner of Bay and North Goodman, has found a simple way to add some humor to these cold conditions using the sign in front of their business.
Currently, the automobile repair shop’s changeable copy sign reads “I AM SICK OF SNOW–YOU GET MY DRIFT,” a sentiment that surely echoes the feelings of most people in Rochester. Owner Bruce Stanton reports that the message was suggested by the shop’s delivery driver. Stanton says that the Auto Stop is always looking for new messages to share with their viewers and will reward usable suggestions with a free oil change.
This isn’t the first time the Auto Stop has shared unconventional slogans with viewers: for example, in the past, the display has proclaimed “IF YOU ARE WILLING TO LEARN YOU’LL NEVER STOP,” and even “MY STUPID BOSS TOLD ME TO CHANGE THIS STUPID SIGN SO I DID.” While the snow comment is currently the most noticeable message, the other side of the sign also reads “CONGRATULATIONS MISSY AND GARY,” referencing the recent birth of Stanton’s granddaughter.
No bigger than a large car itself, the changeable copy sign the Auto Stop uses is becoming a rarity in a world where businesses turn to prominent, high-tech styles to attract attention. However, regardless of what type of sign is being used, studies show that signs are still one of the best ways to advertise a business: the average person will see a business’s sign around twice a day, or 60 times a month, creating an advantageous marketing opportunity.
For this reason, a number of other Rochester businesses have also used changeable displays over the years to connect with their customers. When Sticky Lips Barbecue first opened on Culver Road in 2004, for example, the marquee read “I JUST SPENT MY LIFE SAVINGS. PLEASE EAT MY FOOD. OPENS THURSDAY.” In the years since, the restaurant has also used their sign to congratulate local high school sports teams on their victories, advertise new menu offerings and welcome special guests. Meanwhile, the Bright Bubble Laundromat on Monroe Avenue invites passerby to “GET YOUR DIRTY DONE IN THIRTY” with a message written on the front window in washable marker. These slogans are catchy and engaging, and although they may be less sophisticated than other forms of corporate advertising, they help shape a local consumer culture that is unique to Rochester and Monroe County.
The Auto Stop is a five-bay garage only blocks away from Stanton’s childhood home. The business has currently been operating for 38 years and has no plans to stop displaying their humorous message. However, passerby can expect to see the current slogan for a while; Stanton reports that the sign is, ironically, buried in snow from the last winter storm.