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Rowe Pottery Works had solid 10 rounds at U.S.Open

Ceramic souvenirs for the U.S. Open at Erin Hills are on display at Rowe Pottery Works in Cambridge. The items, including a cheese plate, left, and mugs, were produced at Rowe and will be sold this week in the 39,000-square-foot merchandise pavilion at the golf event.

The U.S. Open hasn't ended for Rowe Pottery Works.

Nearly two weeks after the golf tournament's conclusion at Erin Hills near Hartford, the Cambridge-based pottery company is still taking orders for U.S. Open items and is getting inquires from other businesses about their products.

"It broadens our horizon," said Bev Semmann, who began working at Rowe in 2007 and purchased the company in 2013. "I’m hoping it leads to other golf opportunities. We’d like it to continue."

Semmann and much of her staff spent 10 days at the golf course selling items in the 39,000-square-foot merchandise tent. Rowe was selected as one of two Wisconsin artisans to sell custom U.S. Open products at the event. And most of them sold quickly. In fact, three of the nine products sold out before the tournament teed off on June 15. By the time it ended on June 18, six of the nine items were sold out.

The big sellers included $25 coffee mugs, $70 wine chillers, $50 crocks and beer steins that ranged in price from $30 to $35. About the only item that didn't sell well was a decorative beer bottle.

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"People definitely went for the functional pottery," Semmann said.

U.S. Open officials began researching Wisconsin artisans in 2016 and, after seeing Rowe products online, came to Cambridge in October to tour the facilities and watch production to make sure Rowe could meet demand and quality requirements. Semmann was notified in November that her company was selected and in January details on the types, color and amount of products needed were agreed upon.

Semmann is now selling U.S. Open items in her store in downtown Cambridge and on her company website. She plans to keep U.S. Open items in stock until demand for them flags. She's also talking with other country clubs, is sending out feelers to other U.S. Open host sites and is getting inquiries from other companies who saw her products at the golf event in Erin. 

"We’ve gotten some good leads off it, which is what we had hoped for," Semmann said. "It gave us exposure."

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