Kim and Mike Rosenthal stand with contest winner Laurel Schrader.
ROCHESTER, Wis. — Rosenthal Heating & Air Conditioning has declared a winner in the company’s “Oldest Furnace Contest.” The promotion, which ran in conjunction with Rochester’s “A Day in the Country” celebration, offered a new high-efficiency furnace to the homeowner with the oldest functioning residential furnace or boiler in the tri-county area of Walworth, Kenosha, and Racine counties. (See “Contractor’s Promotion Typical Of ISH Seminar Topic,” in the Sept. 22, 2003 issue ofThe News.)

The winner, Laurel Schrader, 73, of Rochester, has an 86-year-old wood-burning furnace that he has been using to heat the 2,400-square-foot home that his parents built in 1917. Schrader will receive a new Rheem high-efficiency replacement furnace.

In a statement to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Schrader said that he is tired of splitting wood and is ready for a modern heating system. “I’m getting too old to cut the wood [and] you have to keep feeding the furnace,” he said.

Mike and Kim Rosenthal, the owners of Rosenthal Heating & Air Conditioning, characterized the contest as a definite marketing success. The contest yielded a number of other positive results for the company, including:

  • 154 phone responses to inquire about entering the contest.

  • 92 actual contestants.

  • 380 attendees at the pig roast sponsored by the company.

  • 14 equipment sales opportunities scheduled.

  • 12 furnace tuneups scheduled.

    The company has already replaced one furnace as a result of one of the leads garnered during the contest, and the company reports that it was featured in 28 articles in local and regional newspapers.

    Publication date: 09/29/2003