Steinhafels and a play about a bed!

Steinhafels is excited to sponsor a unique theatrical experience playing at the Alchemist Theatre in Bay View over the next few weekends.

The show is called Strange Bedfellows–an evening of short film + theater. It includes 8 international short films, and the world premiere of the short play, The Bed. The play is an introspective look at a man’s existence from birth to death, and the significance his bed plays throughout his life.MAIN POSTER 11x 17 poster.jpg with RISHI TEA LOGO.jpg SAME ROW

When the show’s director and playwright, Jeff Ircink, approached us to be a possible sponsor, it surprisingly turned out to be a perfect fit!

At Steinhafels, we pride ourselves on selling high quality beds and mattresses that promote a good night’s sleep. Check out our past blog about the importance of sleep HERE.

As part of the sponsorship, Steinhafels donated and delivered this bed, which will sit in the center of the stage. Talk about a starring role!! Delivery Operations Manager Kevin Riley says it was a unique and fun delivery.

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We asked Jeff to tell us a little bit more about the play, and why he’s so inspired by beds and sleep.

STEINHAFELS:  Briefly tell us about The Bed, and why people should come out to see it?

JEFF:  I wrote this short play as an homage to my father, who loved to sleep. His entire life he loved to sleep. Sleeping is a universal condition. Everybody sleeps. The storyline is really the story of each of our lives. And – there are very few plays with no actor dialogue. We have a pre-recorded voiceover narration with a music bed and the actors play out the narration on stage. It’s quite lovely, I must say.

The Bed

They should also come because we’re giving away the bed from The Bed at the end of the run, as well as four other grand prizes. And we’re giving away stuff throughout the run. I mean when was the last time you left the theater with one of the set pieces?

STEINHAFELS:  Why did you approach Steinhafels? Why is this a community-based partnership that makes sense?

JEFF:  When I moved back to Wisconsin, I immediately went to Steinhafels and purchased a sleigh bed. I’ve been in a state of bliss ever since–I am not kidding! I know people who work and have worked for Steinhafels and the name is synonymous with quality furniture. It was the first place I thought of, and the first place I approached with our show concept. I think local business ties to the arts help enhance the retailer’s community spirit. It’s not just “come buy furniture from us,” but it’s “our customers also like to be educated, inspired and entertained and here’s how we can support that.”

STEINHAFELS:  You came out to the store to pick a bed for the play.  What did you think… and what do you think of the bed you chose?

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JEFF:  Huge selection! We were there for an hour, maybe? But we did find one bed that works with our set, is functional, and is a style that any patron would love to have in their home.

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STEINHAFELS:  A bed is something we often take for granted. Why is a bed and sleep so important?

JEFF:  My sleeping accommodations (as far as my bed) were horrendous while living in Los Angeles for 12 years. I promised myself that when I moved back to Wisconsin, if there wasn’t a stitch of furniture in my home, I’d splurge and treat myself to a quality bed – mattress, box spring, head & footboard. Which I did, thanks to Steinhafels. I wanted to write a play that paid tribute to a piece of furniture that is taken for granted in film, television, and theater. It’s set dressing – that’s all. I thought it needed its Cecile B. DeMille moment.

STEINHAFELS:  How do you want audience members to feel when you leave the show?

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JEFF:  Two questions are addressed in The Bed:  “What have I accomplished in my life?” and “What do I want to accomplish before I leave this earth?” Everyone asks themselves these two questions at some point in their lives. The play and eight films will strike a nerve with everyone. They’ll laugh and reminisce, and perhaps view their bed and sleeping in a different light. They may even become a bit introspective when it comes to their own lives.

Strange Bedfellows runs April 21-22, 28-29, May 5-6, 12-13 at the Alchemist. Two shows each night at 7 and 9:00 p.m. We hope to see you at the theater for this introspective and touching show!

Purple Survivor Couch: One Woman’s Story

Steinhafels is constantly looking for new and unique ways to partner with the community for various projects and events.  While we donate money to a variety of causes, we also like when our wonderful furniture can serve a higher purpose.  After all, furniture helps to bring families together, and a good piece of furniture can last for generations!

That was the case with the American Cancer Society of Southeast Wisconsin.  They approached us and asked if we could help with their Relay For Life events this summer.  Steinhafels and ACS brainstormed, and we came up with the “Purple Survivor Couch” idea.  The purple couch traveled to several relays, and served as a symbol of survival and hope.

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Check out our PURPLE COUCH SURVIVOR STORIES if you haven’t seen it!

In addition to being a comfy place to pop a squat during relays, the purple couch was also part of a Giveaway to help raise money for Relay.  Many survivors and other relayers entered the contest.

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The lucky winner was announced at the big Kenosha Relay for Life event.  Cancer survivor Nancy Brey is now the proud owner of the purple couch!

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Nancy lives in Twin Lakes and is a retired nurse.  As you will learn, her cancer journey is a very unique one.

NANCY’S STORY

Nancy is 65 years old.  She’s a wife to husband Steve for 45 years, a loving mother to 3 sons, and doting grandma to 13 grandkids!  She’s a retired nurse, and says she has lived a very blessed life… but things could have been very different for Nancy.  You see, she is also a 54-year cancer survivor!!!

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The oldest of 6 children, Nancy grew up on a dairy farm in Paris Township in Kenosha County.  She was a typical kid…until she turned 11, and everything changed.

”This was towards the end of my school year.  Everything I ate came back up, and I knew something was wrong,” Nancy recalls.

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A tumor had formed in Nancy’s small intestine.  She was diagnosed with sarcoma of the small intestine, now commonly known as colon cancer.  Nancy admits, ”It was scary.  I didn’t find out I had the cancer until I was older.  You didn’t say the ‘C word’ to people back in that day.”

Nancy’s parents chose surgery only, and no cobalt therapy.  Although Nancy doesn’t remember much about that time, she is thankful to her parents and the medical staff that took care of her.

In fact, Nancy was so thankful, she decided to pursue a career in the medical field.  She started as a medical assistant, and eventually became a Registered Nurse.  Nancy’s primary role was managing the Hospice House in Kenosha.  ”To see all those people go what they go through, and being able to be there… the greatest reward is being able to help the families and patients go through this journey they are going through.  That has been the most rewarding of all my career,” she says.

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Nancy has also taken part in the Kenosha Relay For Life for many years.  She wants to support fellow cancer survivors, and honor those who have lost their battle, like her cousin’s son who died of leukemia.  She is honored to see the thousands of people who come out for Relay events.  “This is out here, we have to cure this.  That’s why it’s so important.”

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She is excited to be the new owner of the Steinhafels Purple Couch!  She says it’ll be helpful when the family comes over.  Nancy and her husband recently hosted a big sleepover for the grandkids, and the purple couch came in handy!  ”Steve said this is very cozy, and the grandkids think it’s cool.  We had a ball–had a good time.”

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The local chapter of the American Cancer Society is proud to share stories like Nancy’s…and there are so many more amazing stories to tell!

“If you’ve ever heard the words, ‘You have cancer,’ you are a cancer survivor. The American Cancer Society Relay For Life movement celebrates every cancer survivor in every community,” said Kelly Candotti, Corporate Relations for the American Cancer Society. “We’re grateful to Steinhafels for joining with the American Cancer Society to celebrate 1,325 survivors at 40 Relay For Life events this year in southeast Wisconsin.”

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Nancy knows we still have a long way to go in the fight against cancer, but she hopes as her grandchildren get older we get closer and closer to finding a cure, thanks to events like American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

Nancy gets a little emotional as we finish our conversation, and says simply, ”I’m just blessed I’m here.  That’s all I can say.”

Relay For Life events in Southeastern Wisconsin raised $1,715,299 this year.

See more inspiring Relay For Life pictures HERE!

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Donating Life: All in a Day’s Work!

Steinhafels wants to say a big THANK YOU to all of our employees who took the time to give blood yesterday during our BloodCenter of Wisconsin Bus Blood Drive!  Did you know that every 3 seconds someone needs blood?  YOU are the reason some of those people in our area will receive the life-saving treatments they need.  What a cool feeling!!

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We have been holding the blood drive for a few years now, and we are always thinking about ways to improve it, and increase participation.  While we are so happy several of our employees took part, we still need more volunteers in order to truly make the event a success.  If you have any suggestions, please let us know.  We are looking at ways to make it bigger and better next year, and maybe get family, friends, and the community involved as well.  One startling statistic:  60% of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood, but less than 5% do.

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If you are nervous, or want to know more about it, just ask your colleagues about the process.  We talked to two Steinhafels team members about their experiences–one a long-time donor, one a first-timer.  Here’s what they had to say.

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Jimmy Eagle, Human Resources

-Is this your first time donating?

Yes

-Why did you decide to donate?

I donated because it was a great cause, & a little push from my HR counterpart. 😉

-Why is blood donation important?

Blood donation is important because there are a lot of good people out there who need some extra blood when an emergency or an unthinkable moment happens.  It’s cool to think that your blood could have saved someone’s life!

-What do you think of the blood bus?

The blood bus is an awesome idea.  It is a way to get more people involved donating, who normally wouldn’t have time to make it to a blood center.

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-Do you think it’s cool that Steinhafels works with the BloodCenter of Wisconsin and other community organizations on events like this?

The fact that Steinhafels participates and acts with the BloodCenter is just another amazing way this company tries to reach out and give back to the community.  They just set the precedent among organizations on being able to do the right thing.

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Justin Lyons, Web Production Coordinator

-Is this your first time donating?

No.  I’ve donated close to 10 times.

-Why did you decide to donate?

I donate because it’s an easy way to help others who need blood. My motivation is that my blood could really help someone in need.  Knowing people who have needed blood, it is very important to make sure that they have whatever is needed to better their health.  Also, there are usually good snacks after words and needles don’t scare me!

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-Why is blood donation important?

Blood donation is important because it’s a simple public service we can provide to help others in need.

-What do you think of the blood bus?

It’s a place to sit and get it done.  I would’ve donated sitting in the grass if I had to.  They also had Queen on the TV’s in there, and that was pretty sweet.

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-Do you think it’s cool that Steinhafels works with the BloodCenter of Wisconsin and other community organizations on events like this?

I think it says wonders that Steinhafels participates in events like this with the BCoW.  It shows the true values of the company, and how we like to help the community whenever possible.  It also makes it super easy to donate when the Blood Bus comes to you.

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We hope everyone has a safe and fun 4th of July Weekend with friends and family.  Thanks again for working together to make Steinhafels such a great place to work!

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