At their creation, roadhouses provided lodging and dining for passing travelers. With the advent of faster means of transport (like horseback riding) few now offer rooms to let. However, like it's a traditional counterpart, the Spenard Roadhouse is an incredible restaurant; serving locals and tourists alike at the dinner table and at the bar.
In contrast to most businesses, the Roadhouse is known for their delightful and unexpected use of humor. Their sense of professionalism seems almost limited to the menu—beyond that, their voice is filled with positive irony, exaggeration, satire, and sarcasm which creates an accessible, genuine relationship with their audience and community.
And, as a staple of the Anchorage community for over a decade, they believe in giving back to the community that built them. Amongst many other charitable causes—and like their historical origins—they give back by providing entertainment at events like their notable Anniversary party. The events often feature free, local musical acts and are jam packed with guests—lively, fun, and free to all.
As they reached their 11th birthday, the Roadhouse wanted to reconnect with its roots and reach their ever-growing audience.
As the population of Anchorage boomed and the Alaska Railroad called more and more to the small tent city, Anchorage grew into bustling township. Historically, roadhouses then sprang up when significant numbers of people began to move to the frontier—and the last frontier was no exception.
The image of the original Anchorage tent city and the last frontier embodies the grit, resilience, and resourcefulness of Alaskans. When combined with an icon as relevant and recognizable as as the moose—we create an identity that bridges the gap between the old and the new, embodies the authentic and hilarious voice of the Spenard Roadhouse, and conjures an image of country's largest state that is larger than life.
The resulting identity pulls heavily from historical prints and western posters. We feature a traveling frontiersman with an unexpected twist. He does not arrive on horseback but instead, in Spenard Roadhouse's uniquely exaggerated tone, our roadhouse cowboy is riding the back of a bucking moose.
Heavily textured, the Spenard Roadhouse Anniversary collateral feels informal and authentic. It's loose, illustrative brush strokes and offset ink are reminiscent of screen printed posters. On top of the textured, yellowing paper, the warm color scheme gives it a vintage, authentic tone while it's unique typography brings it into the contemporary.
This aesthetic met all of the clients goals and maintained an identity that was inline with their vision. The poster, used for marketing the event, was incredibly successful. With an audience reach of 8,500 people, 1,300 views, and 560 following the event on Facebook alone, the event drew almost 300 attendees. The design was expanded into multiple merchandise items with plans for more.