Thursday, September 18, 2014

A Pick, a Shovel, and a Model-T Ford

It may sound simple, but believe it or not that's how it all started... for Madonna Construction and eventually Madonna Inn, too. The following excerpt from Mrs. Madonna's book, My Point of View, tells the story of Mr. Madonna's humble beginnings as a young boy with big dreams.
"At age 15, Alex borrowed $30 from his mother to buy a Model-T Ford Truck... with this truck he picked up barnyard manure which he sold as fertilizer, hauled rock (which they turned into gravel) and loaded it with sand which he sold to plasterers. This truck and a pick and shovel were the only tools he had to work with, and marked the beginning of a career in construction," (18).
The pick and shovel would later become one of Mr. Madonna's trademarks (which can be seen in various forms around the Inn) and still serves as a reminder of the hard work and dedication which turned Mr. Madonna's dreams into a lasting legacy.

Monday, September 8, 2014

A Celebration for Rudy

Today we held a surprise retirement party for long-time Madonna Inn employee, Rudy Raidl. Rudy began working at the Inn in 31 years ago and has been a dedicated and talented Copper Cafe cook ever since.

When he's not whipping up a delicious dish, Rudy enjoys his other passion - art. Rudy's artwork ranges from realistic life-sized murals, to impressionistic pieces, to cartoon sketches of his fellow employees, and even touch ups on our iconic entrance sign.

Not only was this day special because it was Rudy's last day, but also because it happens to be Rudy's 66th birthday! We chose a Beatles theme for this party since Rudy is a huge fan, complete with a Beatles-themed card and ambient Beatles music playing in the background. Emily Ibarra, our Guest Services Supervisor and also a terrific artist, designed and created Rudy's beautiful card for all the employees to sign. The inscription reads, "We will be a lonely hearts club without you, Rudy. Thank you for all the great years," and the front is a drawing of the famous John, Ringo, Paul, and George. Apart from the card, we all signed Rudy's cook's jacket with sharpies. So fun!

We also presented Rudy with a poster of various cartoons he had drawn and given out to his co-workers over the years. He had no idea that anyone had kept them, so this also made for a fun surprise.

Although we can hardly "Imagine" the Madonna Inn kitchen without Rudy's warm smile, we will always cherish the memories we made with him. We are excited for him to enjoy this next chapter of his life, and we know we will still see him when he stops by for a bite to eat, or to touch up one of his many Madonna Inn murals.

Cheers and congratulations to you, Rudy! Your Madonna Inn family will miss you!