What is it about MoonPies and the city of Mobile? For starters, our fair city consumes around 4 million of these tasty treats every year and they have been the favored 'throw' of many a Mardi Gras parade since the early 50's. Thanks to the quirky vision of former City Councilman Fred Richardson, the city of Mobile has been lowering a 12 foot, lighted mechanical MoonPie from atop the 34-story RSA Trustmark building since 2008. Rogers & Willard is proud to have played a role in this venerable tradition, having built the penthouse structure atop the building as well as the cantilevered arm from which the iconic Moon Pie sign is lowered every New Year's Eve. The project in many ways is emblematic of Rogers & Willard's raison d'etre: bringing to life projects that are both innovative and forward-thinking but which also honor the city of Mobile's rich history and tradition. The logistical challenges of constructing the penthouse atop the RSA were a feat in and of themselves—maintaining the strictest safety standards was a top priority for a job that demanded machines and manpower to work 34 stories in the air. But the MoonPie signage isn't our only legacy in the Trustmark building—true to our love of history and passion for the present, Rogers & Willard transformed the lobby into a celebratory homage to Mobile as the birthplace of Mardi Gras. Installing a series of pyramidal forms, the Retirement System of Alabama (RSA) commissioned the printing of a historical cityscape on one side with vivid symbols of Mardi Gras on the other. This is but one example of how the RSA has boldly transformed downtown Mobile, looking to the future while celebrating the past—the Battle House Hotel and the VanAntwerp building are two other inspiring examples. For visitors to the Trustmark, walking from one end of the installation to the other lends a keen sense of historical continuity between past and future, as the old-time photograph makes way for scenes of jubilation.
MoonPie over Mobile
Rogers and Willard is proud to be a part of the execution of a vision to spotlight our city's rich history.