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RE-BRANDING OF SUNSET My independent journey of redesigning the bar I work at. DESIGNED BY HOPE LENHART


ASSIGNMENT BRIEF

TO CREATE A NEW CAMPAIGN and branding that stays true to the restaurants character, while opening doors to a new design and appearance. This will include a complete revamping of the popular drink menus. Sunset has 38 tap beers, over 200 tequilas, 16 standard margaritas, and over 50 cocktails within the drink menu. It is now is a small, 4-page double sided paper pamphlet. Because the beer kegs change so frequently, the menu is rarely up to date, even though a new one is printed every single week. Not only is this a waste of paper and ink, but there are much better solutions to an always changing menu. Also, there is so much information within the drink menu that they use approximately seven different typefaces, and all of them are awful. The 200+ tequilas are listed in a very small size comic sans (that is just the beginning). To redesign this menu, it is a combination of having a creative approach to layout, combined with a strong knowledge of information architecture. The food menu also needs to be redesigned, along with the restaurants logo. That will be the follow up to the drink menu design, and all should fit together fairly nicely. The second part of my study is to create an advertising campaign for Sunset Cantina. They have won awards for their drinks and food, but not many people are aware of this. There are several attributes to the restaurant that customers love, but it is not widely known around the city. My goal is to bring these traits to life in an ad campaign that is unlike most restaurants. With a different approach, the concept should still have the flexibility to be use it as print ads, web banners, billboards, TV commercials, and a website. The end step is to present this entire campaign and re-branding to the owner of the franchise, Marc Kadish. Being an employee at this restaurant, I will have the ability to interview and talk with customers and employees and gain a feel for how different people view the restaurant. I will talk with the managers before I explore this project further. The final result will be a presentation to Mr. Kadish in efforts to possibly instill my designs into the restaurant permanently.


sunset cantina // rebranding

DESIGNER’S MISSION STATEMENT The goal for Sunset Cantina is to create an identity that is unique and enticing. To ensure each guest receives the best quality mexican-american food and drink they can find in the city of Boston. To focus on things that make them special, such as an array of tequilas and the ability to make frozen beverages. To stress the ever-changing beer menu and keep the food menu consistent yet visually similar. To provide a comfortable and clean premises for dining. To design a visual system that encompasses what the restaurant believes in. Yet most importantly, to make sure that every guest who chooses Sunset Cantina leaves full and happy, and returns soon.

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RESTAURANT HISTORY

SUNSET CANTINA is owned by Marc Kadish. He also owns Sunset Grille & Tap, and Big City (both restaurants). “Kadish is devoted to the cause of beer and food. He started working in restaurants at age 15, working for hotels, inns, restaurants - but knew he wanted his own place. When Kadish opened the Sunset Grill in 1986, it set a record for number of tap lines - more than 25. Sunset Grill has been followed by several other Kadish restaurants, from the Big City right next door, to the Redneck’s sandwich joint (famed for its late night hours), and, most recently, [Sunset Cantina] Mexican restaurant.” - Lucy Saunders. Sunset Cantina has been in business on 916 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston for approximately eight years. It brings in a lot of business since it opened, and has won Boston’s Best Margarita in 2003. The claim to fame of the restaurant is a few key items on the food menu, such as the buffalo wings, fiesta nachos, and steamed beer burgers. The drink menu boasts 38 tap beers and a wide variety of frozen and shaken margaritas. Because the restaurant is not corporately owned, the staff and environment is a lot more relaxed and personal. The owner (Marc) and the current management at the restaurant runs the staff in a very friendly, work-oriented environment. This allows the employees to be more social not only with each other but with the customers who come in.

Sunset Cantina: View of the Bar


I AM CURRENTLY A BARTENDER for this restaurant. I have been employed at Sunset Cantina for a year and a half. I know mostly all the ins and outs of the business, and I have been taking account of all the people (customers and employees) who think that the drink menu is a huge problem. Because I work there and spend a lot of time within the restaurant, I feel like this assignment is very close to home. There are layers of the business that I have learned over time that would be virtually impossible for a random designer to learn when researching this project description. I have an advantage here, and I plan on using it greatly. It might include creating a research documentary, just to have a reference point on the perspectives of my coworkers and customers who I see daily. The whole point is to create a new and improved image for the restaurant I work in. Being a bartender is a great way to be able to converse with customers casually and learn about what they think Sunset Cantina should be visually depicted as.

Hard at work behind the bar.

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VIDEO RESEARCH

THE LOCAL TARGET audience for Sunset Cantina is not just the college students from Boston University, which is conveniently across the street. While these students bring in the majority of the restaurants sales, the goal of Sunset is to entice customers from mid 20s-40s. Because of the restaurants location, BU students will naturally always be the main consumers. Yet because college is very seasonal, the summers and college breaks are always very slow business. The goal of expanding the target audience is to build a better repeating business. If customers mid 20s-40s who live and eat out in Boston regularly come back and start to love Sunset, it will have a constant income rather than seasonal spurts. I decided to stay within the restaurant in the beginning of my process and solely analyze what my peers thought. I conducted interviews and brought home copies of the menu to fully observe. What I found out from this stage was that everyone pretty much thought the same thing: the bar menu sucked.


In this video, I tried to conduct as much research as I could within the restaurant itself. I interviewed the employees who have been there the longest and tried to find out what was the biggest problem regarding design of the bar.

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FIELD RESEARCH

THE MOST IMPORTANT GUIDELINE by my advisor in this preliminary stage was to “get out there” and see what other restaurants designed. I did just that. With my iPhone camera ready, I set off into the city of Boston to photo-document snapshots of other restaurants menus. At first, I was actually in Portland, Maine taking pictures of a drink menu from a local beer pub. It’s decadence was similar to Sunset’s; it had none. It was merely a flimsy piece of paper with comic sans of all the tap beers. I thought to myself at that moment that even though this menu was terrible, I needed to document all different types of menus so I can find out how I truly want to portray this bar. Keeping in mind that Sunset is a tequila/beer bar fusion, I set off to the best beer bars and tequila bars in the city.

Sunset’s current terrible drink menu that they print out every week. It is hardly ever updated and it has horrible design and type treatment.


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ROUGHS

THE MOST IMPORTANT part of these initial sketches was to formulate a layout. The design portion would stem from inspiration, not the beginning sketches. The hardest part for me to figure out was how to design a menu that would be A) cost effective and B) sit well on a table. Because no matter how beautiful the menu I design turns out, if it’s too big and too expensive and doesn’t sit right on the table, then it is not a marketable design. On the other spectrum, if it is too small, or the type is too small, the user simply cannot read it within a dimly lit restaurant. These variables are important in designing menus, which is interesting as a graphic design student at MassArt. I have never had to worry about how my projects would be “distributed” because the design process at school always ends with the final, single printout. With my advisor’s help, we figured out a good system for the layout. Once I had this down, it was just the design I had to work out. And that was the most fun!


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MORE ROUGHS

AS MY JOURNEY CONTINUED, I realized what I needed to do. I had a great design layout nailed down, all I needed was to perfect typography and my styles. I will say, and my advisor will vouch for me, that in the beginning my type treatment was a mess. Spacing wqas off, size was off, I honestly think I was focusing way too much on design elements to worry about that yet. Great critiquing led to my further perfecting type treatments, and even abandoning the sponge-paint typeface I had going on there for a while. Slowly but surely I knew that I was headed in the right direction. I stopped into work and showed everyone, and they all really enjoyed it.


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FINAL MENU

on draft HEFE & WHEAT & WHITE Allagash White, ME 5.2% // $5.99 [$8.99 for a 23 oz.] Clown Shoes Clementine, MA 6% // $5.99 [$8.99 for a 23 oz.] Weihenstephaner, GERM 5.4% // $5.99 [$8.99 for a 23 oz.]

FRUIT & HERB Lindemans Framboise, BELG (Raspberry) // 10 oz. $5.99 Lindeman’s Peche, BELG 13 oz. $5.99 Sea Dog Blue Paw Wheat (with real blueberries) $5.25

SEASONAL Ipswich Winter 6.0% MA $4.99 // 23 oz. $6.50

LIGHT & KOLSCH Coors Light 4.2% CO $4.25 // 23 oz. $5.99

PILSNER & BOCK Pilsner Urquell, CZECH 5.5% // $4.99

CIDER Strongbow Cider, ENG 5.0% // $5.50

bar menu on draft STEAMS, REDS & ALES

TRIPLE & STRONG

Anchor Steam, CA 4.9% // $4.99

Allagash Tripel, ME 9.0% // $5.99, 13 oz.

Breckenridge Avalanche, CO 5.2% // $4.99

Chimay Cinq Cents, BELG 8.0% // $8.99, 13 oz.

Duchess de Bourgogne (Flemish Red Sour), BELG 6.0% // $8.99, 13 oz.

Clown Shoes Muffin Top, MA 10.0% // $7.99, 13 oz.

Duvel Single, BELG 6.8% // $5.99, 13 oz.

Left Hand Widdershins Oak Aged Barleywine Vintage 2010, CO 10.0% // $7.99, 13 oz.

Mayflower Spring Hop, MA 5.3% // $4.99

ST. Bernardus ABT 12, BELG 10.0% // $8.99, 13 oz.

Pretty Things Lovely ST. Winefride Brown, MA 7.0% // $5.99, 13 oz.

Stone Arrogant Bastard, CA 7.2% // $5.99, 13 oz.

Three Heads Smoked Maple Amber, NY 5.2% // $5.99

PALE ALE, I.P.A. & D.I.P.A Anchor Liberty, CA 6.0% // $4.99 Blatant I.P.A, MA 6.5% // $4.99, 13 oz. Clown Shoes Tramp Stamp, MA 7.0% // $5.99 Dogfish Head 90 Minute, DE 9.0% // $6.99, 13 oz. Fish Tale Organic IPA, WA 6.5% // $5.99, 13 oz. Green Flash West Coast IPA, CA 7.3% // $5.99, 13 oz. Ithaca Flower Power, NY 7.5% // $5.99, 13 oz. Slumbrew Flagraiser I.P.A., MA 7.5% // $5.99

Victory Golden Monkey, PA 9.5% // $5.99, 13 oz

PORTER & STOUT Berkshire Cofeehaus Porter (on Nitro), MA 6.3% // $4.99, 13 oz. Dogfish Head Black & Red (double Imp. Stout with Raspberry & Mint), DE 10.5% // $7.99, 13 oz. Dogfish Head Miles Davis Bitches Brew, DE 9.0% // $8.99, 13 oz. Guinness, IRE 4.2% // $5.25 Maine Mean Old Tom, ME 6.5% // $7.50, 13 oz.


margaritas sweet

who are we? Why Cantina? Roots of the “Cantina“ lie in the social history

Very Berry golden tequila, rose’s lime juice, strawberry puree, sour mix, blueberry & black raspberry liquer, with floatin’ blueberries and cherries. $6.99

of Mexico and the area of the Mediterranean. A “Cantina“ is a

Bahamarita margaritaville mango, mango liquer, cointreau, pineapple juice, fresh orange slice, cherry, and sugared rim. $7.50

refuge where people meet others, share good and bad times,

COCKTAILS

tequila SunSet margaritaville mango, pomegranate liquer, triple sec, orange juice and a drizzle of grenadine. $8.99

margaritas, martinis, shooters, frozen drinks, highballs, and more!

PomeGranate margaritaville tangerine and passion fruit, pomegranate liquer, and fresh sour mix. $7.99

strike up friendships, celebrate and relax as they fuel them“ selves with creative energy, and take care of business, social, romantic, or political agendas, but mainly to quench their thirst and hunger. All beers and drinks are different. We strive to bring you the freshest, newest and most obscure

lime & CoConut margaritaville lime and coconut, sour mix and coconut puree. $6.99

melon rita margaritaville tangerine, melon liquer and sour mix. $6.99 horny marGarita sauza hornitos blanco, pineapple juice and splash sour with a sugared rim. $7.99

as beer produced from all corners of the world. If you must

mafioSa “mind eraSer” el jimador reposado, gran gala orange liquer, bacardi 151, orange juice, and sour mix. $10.99

drink and drive, drink root beer.

Blended daquiriS and marGaritaS any flavor or combination: coconut, melon, strawberry, lime, mango, or pomegranate. ChoColate monkey banana liqueur, kahlua, chocolate syrup & ice cream moChaChinno coffee, chocolate syrup, kahlua, creme de cacao & irish creme mudSlide absolut vanilla, irish creme, kahlua, ice cream, swirl of chocolate & whipped cream

shooters

3 amiGoS tres generaciones plata & anejo, sauza hornitos, cointreau, sour mix and splash of orange juice. $9.99

B-52 layered shot of kahlua, bailey’s, and grand marnier $6.99

Pink CadillaC riazul silver, grand marnier, splash cranberry juice, rose’s lime, and sour mix. $9.99

raSPBerry kamikaze stoli raz, triple sec, and lime juice $6.99 reBel yell southern comfort, pineapple & roses lime juice $6.99

BiG City sauza gold, grand marnier, cointreau, rose’s lime juice, and sour mix. $7.99 Cantina ClaSSiC jose cuervo, grand marnier, cointreau, fresh lime, sour mix. $7.99

tart

patron platinum, splash of gran marnier & cointreau. shaken with sour mix. $35.99

PerfeCto sauza hornitos, agave nectar, fresh lime juice, fresh lemonade. $8.99

BlueS BrotherS sauza gold and silver, blue curacao, fresh sour mix. $6.99

mardi GraS a smokey margarita with mezcal, anejo, reposado tequilas, sour mix, cointreau over ice with a salted rim. $8.99

Surfer on aCid jagermeister, malibu & pineapple juice $6.99 JuSt Patron-ize me patron citronage, patron xo & irish creme $6.99

$7.99

Bahama mama creme de banana, malibu & myers rum, & pineapple juice. $6.99 JamaiCan Blast mt. gay rum, pineapple, orange juice, grenadine, and a drizzle of myers dark rum. $6.99 CaCtus CooleR spiced rum, midori, lime juice, orange juice, and pep-up, served on the rocks. $6.99 PeaCh GReen tea absolut peach, peach schnapps and sweetened green tea, splash of sour mix. $6.99 Paulos PomeGRanate PeaCh CooleR absolut peach vodka, pomegranate liquer, lemonade and splash of sprite. $6.50 southeRn Belle PunCh spiced rum, southern comfort, watermelon pucker & fruit punch served on the rocks. $7.99 JamaCian me CRazy rum, peach & melon liquer, creme de banana & pineapple juice. $6.99

sPiRits&WiNE tequila, bourbon, whiskey, wine, and flights!

Blanco/Plata Pepe Lopez • El Rey Intrigue Suave • Espolon Oro Viejo • Cuervo Especia Lunazul $6.99

El Tesoro • Chinaco • Oro Azul Zapopan • Cuervo Platino Tres Rios • Corralejo • Corzo El Jimador • Arette • El Mayor Joyas de Mex • Cuervo Traditional Cazadores • Don Roberto Plata $7.99

Casino • Maestro Dobel • Certeza Avion • 1800 Silver • Don Julio Purasangre • Paqui • Tenzon Exotico Silver • Espectacular • El Capo Antiguo • El Charro • Trago • Tierras Asom Broso • Siete Leguas • Chaya Cuervo Classico • Tres Generaciones Hotel California $8.99

Don Eduardo • Siembra Azul Kah Silver • Esperanto • Sauza Hornitos Cofradia • Herradura • El Conde Azul Don Diego • Corazon • Riazul Gran Centenario • Cabo Wabo Milagro Single Barrel or Silver $9.99

Pueblo Viejo • Hotel California Certeza • El Mayor • El Charro El Tesoro • Chamucos • Hornitos Avion • Partida • El Mayor • Corralejo Tierras (Organic) $8.99

Ocho • Lapis • La Cofridia Casa Noble • Tenoch • Cabo Wabo Herradura • Chaya • Don Julio Don Eduardo • Riazul • Corzo Cuervo Tradicional • Certeza Esperanto $9.99

Milagro • Corazon • Trago Gran Centenario • Asom Broso Hora Zero • Casino • Agave Dos Mil Milagro Single Barrel $10.99

Don Julio • Lapis • Avion Espolon • Corzo • Hotel California Arette • El Tesoro • Certeza Antiguo • El Mayor Reserve Trago • La Cofridia $9.99

Purasangre • Herradura Corralejo • Don Eduardo Partida • Sol Dios • El Charro Antiguo • Chinaco • Esperanto Sauza Hornitos • Oro Azul $10.99

Riazul • Don Diego • Chaya Gran Centenario • Cabo Wabo Milagro Anejo • Casino • Patron Los Azuejos • Tres Generaciones $12.99

RePosado

aged, vanilla and caRamel notes

$6.99

cRisP, RefReshing, unaged

tequilas

CoCktails RoCk City iCe tea absolut, bacardi, gin, triple sec, sour mix and cola.

moB BoSS

Pina Colada coconut rum, coconut mix & pineapple juice

CinCo de marGarita cazadores resposado, patron citronage, splash agave, sour mix. $9.99

Cool Runnin’ light and dark rum, banana & black raspberry liquor and pineapple.

Billionare’S marGarita don julio real, (special aged top shelf anejo), cointreau, lime juice, agave nectar and sour mix $59.99

frozen & frosty

Golden manGo mamBo margaritaville mango, mango schnapps, and fresh sour mix. $6.99

beers and styles from local and exotic breweries, as well

exclusive Margaritas

El Jimador • Tres Rios Sauza Blue • Lunazul Cazadores • Espolon • 1800 $6.99 Oro Azul • Chinaco $7.99

anejo Sauza Commemortivo Espectacular • Tierras El Mayor • 1800 El Jimador • Cazadore $8.99

sPecial aged anejos & otheR exquisite tequilas Grand Mayan $9.99 Herradura Suprema $49.99 Partida Elegante $29.99 Don Julio 1942 $18.99 Del Maguey Tobala $17.99 Patron Platinum $34.99 Asom Broso Anejo $14.99

Don Julio 70th Anniversary $9.99 Cabo Uno Anejo $54.99 Milagro Romance $21.99 Don Julio Real $59.99 Cuervo La Reserve $18.99 El Tesoro Paradis $19.99 Milagro Single Barrel Anejo $14.99

tequila types silver tequila is a clear spirit that can be either 100/ agave or mixto. these tequilas are aged no more 60 days in stainless steel tanks, if they are aged at all. Reposado, or /rested,/ tequilas are aged in wood tanks or casks for a minimum of 2 months. the higher/quality Reposados are aged from 3/9 months. añejo tequila is /old/ tequila. these tequilas are aged in white or french oak barrels /and often used bourbon barrels/ for a minimum of 1 year producing a dark, very robust spirit. the best añejos are aged between 18 months and 3 years while the best 100/ agave tequila is aged for up to 4 years.

spirits & wines WHITE WINES Wiley Jack Chardonnay, California Glass $5.99 Bottle $21.99 Sterling Vineyard Chardonnay, California Glass $6.99 Bottle $32.99 Fetzer Sauvignon Blanc, California Glass $6.99 Bottle $32.99 Dan Zante Pinot Grigio, Italy Glass $6.99 Bottle $32.99 Kenwood Sonoma Chardonnay, California Bottle $34.99

RED WINES Jekel Merlot, California Glass $7.50 Bottle $33.99 Chateau St. Jean Cabernet Sauvignon, California Glass $7.99 Bottle $34.99 Hangtime Pinot Noir, California Glass $7.99 Bottle $34.99 Greg Norman Shiraz, California Bottle $34.99 St. Francis Old Vine Zifandel, California Bottle $39.99

BOURBONS Jim Beam, Jim Beam Red Stag, Jack Daniels Wild Turkey, Wild turkey 81, Wild Turkey 101, Maker’s Mark, Maker’s Mark #46, Maker’s Mark 90

SCOTCH, BLENDED SCOTCH, CANADIAN & IRISH WHISKEY Bushmills, Black Bush, Glenfiddich 18 Year, Ancient Reserve Scapa, Single Malt Glenlevet Nadurra, Canadian Club, Crown Royal, Seagrams 7, Dewar’s, Johnny Walker Black, Johnny Walker Red, Jameson, Jameson Gold Reserve, Jameson Special Reserve, Michael Collins, Michael Collins Double, Michael Collins 10 Year

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LOGOTYPE STUDIES

FOR A LOGO I wanted something that represents the company as a whole. Right now the current logo is very outdated, as you can see below. It is cheesy and tacky in the most positive way I could say that. Essentially, my goal was to keep the elements of the logo but modernize it. I wanted to keep the palm tree no matter what. This symbolizes that the bar obviously sells tropical drinks, and that is a hit for customers. I started with logo inspiration that I hunted for in many Mexican, margarita, and cantina establishments. I discovered that if the restaurant was high-end, the logo looked classier and more chic. If the restaurant was more “fun” and on the average dining scale, the logo would be crazy with margaritas coming off it. This made my job very hard. I really wanted to come up with something that was in between, but it seemed as if no one had done that yet. On another note, the owner of Sunset Cantina has an affinity for neon lights. Therefore, the logo is embedded into neon lights all over the restaurant. For me, this made it very difficult to stray too far away from the current logo for obvious reasons that if he kept some of the neon lights with the old logo, customers wouldn’t be confused.

Sunset’s current terrible logo that they throw on every sign and menu they can get their little hands on.


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FINAL LOGOTYPE

MY EXPLORATION into logo design is a huge process. Sometimes, developing a logo for a company can be harder than many other deliverables (i.e. menu, brochures, etc). In this case, I definitely found that developing the logo for Sunset Cantina was in some ways more difficult. Some logos I would design and then look at them and think, “Did I really just make that?� But I had to focus on the target audience and the style and unfortunately, really clean sans-serif type kearned perfectly was not going to work for this company. So, pride withheld, I just tried everything I could think of. Once I added the palm tree, the logo came to me. That helped me balance the type and pick two typefaces that I felt embodied the restaurant. Classic but also fun. Different renderings and changing points around led me to the final logo I came up with, seen below.

This is the final logotype I decided to pursue. It works in a variety of colors and sizes.


EXPLORATION

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LETTER TO THE OWNER


Dear Mark Kadish,

After working at Sunset Cantina for almost two years, I have learned a lot about the

restaurant and the clientel. Having said this, I also happen to be a graphic design student at Massachusetts College of Art and Design. From being a bartender, I know better than anyone else that the drink menus need to change. I think they fit for the Sunset Grill, but the Cantina cannot just be a replica restaurant to the Grill. They need their own menus that embody the charm and aesthetic to a Mexican-Cantina-meets-beer-bar. After much thought, I decided to take on the task of redesigning the Cantina drink menu; which I see as one of the biggest problems about the restaurant. We have amazing drinks but the way they are displayed hurts business. The bartenders sell a lot better margaritas when we talk with the customer and tell them what we like and what is good, as opposed to the customer opening up a menu.

My goal for this project was to create a new campaign and branding that stays true to the

restaurants character, while opening doors to a new design and appearance. Sunset has 38 tap beers, over 200 tequilas, 16 standard margaritas, and over 50 cocktails within the drink menu. It is now is a small, 4-page double sided paper pamphlet. Because the beer kegs change so frequently, the menu is rarely up to date, even though a new one is printed every single week. Not only is this a waste of paper and ink, but there are much better solutions to an always changing menu. Also, there is so much information within the drink menu that they use approximately seven di ferent fonts, and most of them are hard to read. To redesign this menu, it is a combination of having a creative approach to layout, combined with a strong knowledge of information architecture.

I will also redesign the restaurants logo to fit with the new menu design. This is something

that people have been talking about for a while. During my research phase, I took videos and held interviews with coworkers and customers inquiring about what they think of the drink menu itself. There is a lot of competition budding in the city of Boston, alongside Lolita, Teamezcal, and Mija (which all opened within the past year) there are a few other mexican places that stand taller than Sunset Cantina. I know the main attraction is the beer, but if we have 200+ tequilas, let’s use them. The restaurant just got renovated and expanded. It is also time for a fresh look.

Sincerely,

Hope Lenhart

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Sunset Cantina Rebranding