Schmit Bros. to celebrate 100 years of selling vehicles from stores in Port, Saukville
It‚Äôs a celebration that‚Äôs been a century in the making.
Schmit Bros. Ford co-owners Mike and Jim Schmit are preparing to celebrate the car dealership‚Äôs 100th year of business.
The Saukville dealership at 925 E. Green Bay Rd. is one of only 15 in the country to be in business 100 years or longer.
‚ÄúFord Motor Company puts a tremendous value on it, and so do we,‚ÄĚ Jim said. ‚ÄúWhen you have a family business that‚Äôs been able to span three generations, you‚Äôre pretty fortunate.‚ÄĚ
Mike and Jim are the third generation of brothers to run the dealership started in Port Washington by their grandfather Mike E. Schmit and his brother Joe W. Schmit on Oct. 1, 1912.
As the first Ford dealer in the state, the business started out selling Model T cars for $850.
In 1976, the dealership moved to its Saukville location. In 2011, it underwent a 10,000-square-foot expansion that included a new showroom, offices and the creation of a drive-through service department.
‚ÄúWe‚Äôre geared up for expansion of the whole area. We think Saukville and Port Washington are going to boom in the next 10 years, and when that happens, we‚Äôve got everything in place to take care of that volume,‚ÄĚ Mike said.
While they look ahead to the future, the brothers are taking a moment to pause and celebrate the milestone with a party from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29.
Ken Czubay, vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service for Ford Motor Company, will attend the event.
‚ÄėHe‚Äôs been very instrumental in Ford‚Äôs progress through the recession, so we‚Äôre very pleased that someone so influential can be here to celebrate with us,‚ÄĚ Mike said.
The Greater Milwaukee Model T Ford Club will have two dozen vehicles on display.
The Classic Thunderbird Club of Wisconsin will host a car show with proceeds benefitting Children‚Äôs Hospital of Wisconsin.
The Saukville and Port Washington fire departments will have equipment on display. The Ozaukee County mobile command center will also be there.
‚ÄúThere are all these different and fun things to look through that will be educational and fun at the same time,‚ÄĚ Mike said.
Food will be sold by Boy Scout Troop 875, while Girl Scout Troop 7810 will have fall decorations available for purchase.
The Schmits said the anniversary is one they could not have reached without the support of the community or the hard work put in by their grandfather and his brother so many years ago.
‚ÄúThey‚Äôd be extremely happy and pleased because they knew that taking care of the customer was the most important thing, and we‚Äôve done that over the years.‚ÄĚ Mike said.
Image Information: BROTHERS AND THIRD-GENERATION owners of Schmit Bros. Ford Jim (left) and Mike Schmit posed in a Model T Ford outside their recently renovated Saukville dealership. Photo by Sam Arendt