Friede News & Updates

The Moment I Realized “We Do Weird Well”

[fa icon="calendar"] Mar 16, 2017 8:13:00 AM / by Scott G. Truehl

Scott G. Truehl

Go-Kart Track | Wilderness Resort | Friede & Associates | The DellsThe indoor go-kart track at Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort in The Wisconsin Dells. Construction of this unique attraction was like building a ship in a bottle.

I remember the moment vividly.  We had just completed a nine-month-long project at Wilderness Hotel & Golf Resort in The Dells that included the construction of a new, indoor go-kart track, a swim-up bar and a boardwalk-themed food venue within one of their waterparks. The project had involved working through one of the coldest winters on record, and involved constructing a building in an area that had previously been an outdoor pool area and deck that was surrounded by two wings of the existing resort.

In addition, Friede & Associates was tasked with recreating a corridor to connect the wings of the hotel through the new structure, as we had removed an elevated walkway while creating a larger building envelope. Because the new swim-up bar was situated within the center courtyard of the hotel, the only access for equipment and material would be through the area where we were constructing the new go-kart attraction. In many ways, that part of the project was like building a ship in a bottle.

Contractor's Tool Source | Friede & AssociatesOn that late spring day, I invited our Project Manager Ethan Kent and our Superintendent Pat Weber to join me to meet with a reporter from Contractor's Tool Source who wanted to write a feature story on this exciting, new project.

Following a tour of the new attractions, the four of us sat down for the interview. The reporter’s first question went like this: “Was there anything unique about this project, and did you face any special challenges during construction?” My mind raced. I immediate thought about how challenging the site had proven to be…and, of course, how cold it had been and how many days we had lost as a result of poor weather… and how our work on this major construction project had to be done during the hours of 9-to-5 on Monday through Thursday…and how we had to be done and out of the parking lot by 2 pm on Friday to make room for the new guests who would be coming in to enjoy the resort for the weekend… and the extraordinary measures we needed to take to minimize the inconvenience to Wilderness Resort’s guests. 

Wilderness Resort Swim Up Bar | Friede & Associates | Wisconsin ConstructionThen I looked at Ethan and Pat who had been silent for a few seconds and something amazing happened. The two of them both shrugged their shoulders and almost simultaneously said “Not really.”  I was stunned. I quickly reminded them of the many challenges we had encountered, only to have the guys smile and say, “Sure, but this is The Dells. We’re used to doing the weird projects.” And, that’s when it hit me, at Friede & Associates…We Do Weird Well!

Ever since that day of discovery three years ago, our team has realized that we thrive on those “weird” projects. We don’t view those projects as a problem that interferes with our workflow, or turn away projects because they have the potential to be highly challenging—we embrace them! It doesn’t matter whether the project comes with a limited budget, difficult site conditions or a ridiculously short schedule. If the project simply requires the need to think outside of the box to solve our clients’ challenges, we accept the challenge, and we really do excel. Why? One reason is that we are fortunate to have hundreds of years of experience that our “cast and crew” bring to each and every construction opportunity.

ABC Projects of Distinction | Friede & AssociatesHere’s proof that this happens every day around our shop: Since that interview 15 of Friede’s recent projects have received Projects of Distinction Awards from the Associated Builders and Contractors, and three of our projects received national design awards from Metallic Metal Building Systems. This makes Friede & Associates one of the most decorated contractors in all of Wisconsin.

So, if you have a project that might be a little (or a lot) challenging, give us a call. After all, anybody can build a box, but at Friede & Associates, We Do Weird Well!

Request a Free Consultation

Click on the text links above to see the cool projects we’ve built at Wilderness Resort.
See more “weird” projects below:

B-Lux Grill & Bar

Chula Vista Fire Restoration

Wilderness Resort Claim Jumper Attraction

Kalahari Slide Tower Replacement

Sanimax Fire Restoration

About Friede:

When you select Friede & Associates, you are buying more than our quality-assured construction services. You also get the performance and reliability of some of the top suppliers and subcontractors in the area. While other contractors may be cutting quality to remain competitive on price, Friede is forging relationships with members of the project team to bring you the best value and highest quality for your investment.


 Friede & Associates | Wisconsin Commercial Construction 

Topics: ABC of Wisconsin, Projects of Distinction, Design Build Construction

Scott G. Truehl

Written by Scott G. Truehl

Executive Vice President & Partner—With more than 30 years of experience in site selection and commercial development, Scott is responsible for assisting clients with not only their project development, but also their site analysis/acquisition, municipal approval and development needs. Scott is an active member and presenter at the international Construction Leadership Network and is a speaker at both national and state contracting conferences on topics including: creating a positive corporate culture; marketing construction services; design-build construction; and working with Realtors and developers. He also routinely participates in “Meet the Generals” programs around the state of Wisconsin and speaks to hundreds of trade contractors each year on how to effectively work with general contractors. For more than three decades, Scott has served the Wisconsin community in various roles: as a city councilman in Madison and Stoughton, as well as on numerous municipal boards, committees and economic development commissions.

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