Manitowoc, WI, Is a Town of 35,000 People Who Can Go with the Flow
Manitowoc ice machines used to be all we knew about Manitowoc. In fact, we didn’t even know that Manitowoc ice machines were built in a place called Manitowoc. Then we took the time to find out more about this small town in eastern Wisconsin. It’s not just the epicenter of the commercial ice machine world; it’s the pride of the Manitowoc River and the county seat of – you guessed it – Manitowoc County. Located in Brett Farve’s back pocket, just a half-hour from Green Bay, Manitowoc sits at the mouth of the Manitowoc River where it enters Lake Michigan.
Manitowoc’s humble origins date back to 1820 and the family of Matthew Stanley, the original settlers. Given its geographical advantages as a gateway to the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway, Manitowoc unsurprisingly has been closely tied to seafaring, trading, fishing and shipbuilding. During World War II, Manitowoc iced its share of the Axis military machine by building tankers, subs and landing craft.
Today, this powerhouse of commercial icemaker manufacturing is the site of the Wisconsin Maritime Museum, one of the largest museums in the U.S. dedicated to ships and seafarers. Originally the Manitowoc Submarine Memorial Association, the museum is the current home of the mothballed WWII submarine Cobia and boasts over 60,000 square feet of displays. The quality and quantity of the Manitowoc museum’s efforts have been rewarded with Smithsonian Museum affiliation.
Other Manitowoc Features
For a small town that doesn’t even have its own TV station, Manitowoc is associated with a good number of fun features and facts:
- the mother house of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity is in Manitowoc.
- this city of some 35,000 residents also is home to about 23,000 Roman Catholics.
- Manitowoc has sent several favorite sons to the NFL, including Don Davey, Doug Free and Mike Lorenz.
- In the movie The Prince and Me, Julia Stiles plays a farm girl from Manitowoc, the ice machine mecca of the country.
And Manitowoc Ice Machines
Of course, on our little restaurant equipment blog, no mention of Manitowoc, WI, is going to pass without us pontificating a little about best-of-breed Manitowoc ice machines like the Manitowoc SY-0504, an easy-to-clean and typically reliable Manitowoc icemaker that generates 540 pounds of half-dice sized ice cubes every day. Manitowoc ice machines are made by the Manitowoc Foodservice Group, a three-division corporation that features the brands Manitowoc Ice, Kolpak, McCall, Hartford, Servend and Multiplex.
Needless to say, Manitowoc ice machines are pretty darned important to the small town of Manitowoc, WI. Without them – and the good people of Manitowoc who make them – our glasses would be a lot lonelier during long, hot, ice-cube-less summer nights.