Service Credit Union Mobile Community Engagement Event Automobile and Trailer Design

PROJECT: Mobile Community Engagement Event Automobile and Trailer
CLIENT:  Service Credit Union
LOCATION: Portsmouth, NH


Winner, NEFMA 2021 Best Brand Activation


Image 4 Extends Life of Successful Community Engagement Program

A key part of any financial institution’s Brand Identity is how their Brand hits the pavement. For over years, Service Credit Union has been present at holiday parades with their beloved “train” – an aged Jeep remodeled to resemble a Christmas train that pulled a trailer of children through New Hampshire’s holiday parades.  After its extended time in service, the old Jeep was no longer road-worthy. Long-time client Service Credit Union approached image 4 to re-imagine and re-build a new event kit.


  • Sourcing and Legal
  • Concept
  • Fabrication
  • Sound/Systems Engineering & Installation
  • Graphic Design
  • Graphic Production
  • Service Contract

Project Overview

Jamie Yates, Community Relations Manager, and Aimee Sundstrom, VP of Marketing/Communications are part of an energetic team of marketing and community relations staff who make sure that SCU presents their Authentic Brand – community focused, accessible and always helpful. The prospect of losing the powerful community outreach program around the Holiday Train was a major blow to the marketing presence. The Image 4 team took on the project with a full head of steam!

Image 4 started with the experience in mind – after all, this was Santa and children! All agreed that the program was effective, yet to maintain it, budget had to be controlled.

With a careful eye on the checkbook, Image 4 sourced a modern used Jeep, and set about creating new elements that would delight and engage the customers and parade-goers alike. Our design team roughed out a shape that was much closer to the look of a real steam locomotive. Our sourcing group located an antique locomotive bell and steam whistle. Our graphic design team created a contemporary livery, complete with numbers reflecting the founding of the Credit Union.

Steel was purchased, and the Jeep was cut apart. We fabricated the boiler, smokestack, running boards, and cab. Our shop crew, completely into the project, installed the air compressor to feed the whistle, mounted a bell cord for the engineer to pull, and specified and installed a HUGE sound system to play seasonal music. Image 4’s project manager researched safety and compliance with NH DOT requirements and assured we were “on-track” to pass inspection. Our graphic team took care of the final details with a bronze “builders plate” commemorating the project.

The train was driven to a local shop for repairs and has passed inspection since its creation. Image 4 manages maintenance and inspections of “engine 1957” so it will continue to delight more viewers, and present SCU’s community Brand for years to come.