Signature Windows + Doors

Our Annual Trip to Warroad, MN

Every year, SolarGlass invites our customers to join them on a trip to Warroad, MN to see first-hand how the Marvin products are manufactured. We typically take the trip twice a year in March and October, with two-legs on each trip (a Monday-Tuesday group, and a Wednesday-Thursday group). Architects qualify for AIA (American Institute of Architects) credits by taking this trip, knocking out 5 credits towards their requirement to maintain membership.

Private airplane

Marvin has three charter planes that fly their visitors to their factory for a two-day tour of the plant, coupled with wonderful meals, tours of the town, conversation with the friendly locals, and educational learning sessions.

SolarGlass just recently completed another successful tour of the factory with prospective architects and builders.
Once in Warroad, they are greeted by their tour guide, who drives them to check in to the hotel room provided by Marvin, conveniently located right across the street from the Marvin Plant.

Warroad, MN

On the drive to the hotel, you will begin to get a sense for just how small the town truly is. Marvin has over 2,200 employees in Warroad, while the town of Warroad has a population of only 1,780.
The first tour that takes place upon arrival, is the tour of the wood processing plant, where we can witness just how intricate the wood treatment process is.
The factory floor holds crates and crates of wood pieces that were marked as “defective” without a defect visible to the human eye. They make sure that each piece that moves on to the next stage of production, is absolutely perfect. To avoid any imperfection, the wood pieces go through several audits for quality control. If a piece of wood has a minor defect, such as a crack, knot, or dent, it is rejected and recycled into wood chips which they use to fuel the plant and keep it heated in the winter. In the summer months, they donate the wood chips to local farmers to use as bedding for their farm animals.
The factory is also equipped with sensors to determine the best possible lines to chop the wood, avoiding knots in the process, as well as moisture detectors to ensure each wood slice is dry enough to move into production.
While some workers might get annoyed with tour groups cramping their working spaces, these folks welcome everyone. Workers who are operating equipment are known to invite you into their working area so you can get a closer look.
Everyone else smiled, engaged conversation, waved, and were just all around nice, hardworking people. They would even stop what they were doing to answer questions we had.
Some of the tour guides have worked for Marvin for over 30 years while current employees average 10-20 years of loyalty to the company. Marvin is proud to employ generations upon generations of hard workers.

Lunch in Warroad

The rest of the first day consists of a product knowledge training during lunch, an architectural presentation, and one more factory tour of the Ultimate Casement Line, Signature Services, and Lift and Slide.

Dinner in Warroad MN

For the evening, Marvin invites their guests to join them for dinner at the best restaurant in town, called the Legion. With each meal, you are introduced to a new employee who is equally as friendly and accommodating as the tour guides. At the American Legion, you have the opportunity to sample their famous walleye- a fish that is abundant in Warroad (and, quite delicious). Or, Prime Rib if you prefer.
On the second day of the trip, you will have two product discussions sessions, and one more factory tour of the round tops division. You’ll have a chance to tour the Marvin Museum and learn about the history of the company, as well as peruse the gift shop for some postcards and apparel.
This is a great opportunity for any architect or builder to come and learn about the product offering, understand how the products are manufactured, and get a sense for the Marvin family culture.

Group Photo

If you are an architect or builder interested in using Marvin products and taking a trip to Warroad with us, give us a call.

Posted March 24, 2016 by Signature Windows + Doors


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