This week we are celebrating the 90th birthday of a very special woman! Can you guess who she is?
“Behind every successful man is a great woman.”
Humble as she is, we insist this sentiment to be true of our beloved originators, as we know Wally would. We are thrilled to honor Mrs. Irene Bronner on her 90th birthday!
In his own words from his autobiography Sharing JOY 365, Wally credits his beautiful bride:
“Irene mightily inspired, encouraged and supported me. … Irene’s support during this exciting time of progress [business foundations and growth in early marriage] was never failing. She was a dear wife and motivator in our home and in our business.”
All throughout his book Wally cites Irene’s dedication to all she did. From caring for his father or niece during times of loss, to her commitment to her faith. Her involvement in many activities, including nurturing their growing family. And not the least, supporting him as the business evolved with the Lord’s blessings. Irene radiates with such a warm and genuine spirit. She and Wally’s love for the Lord permeates everything they do … and EVERYONE they meet!
Together Wally and Irene have stewarded well what the Lord has given them. Many people may just see a Christmas store, but if you talk to Bronner’s team members or many guests who have been visiting for years, it is so much more …
Irene … 90th Birthday Wishes From Some Of Your Team
- “Irene has such grace, class, kindness … She lives her faith in everything she does. I love her to pieces and it has been a privilege to have known her all these years. Wally would not have been able to establish Bronner’s without Irene. She has been a devoted wife, mother, missionary and co-worker. God bless her with many more years.” – Jan Kribs
- “‘But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace’ (Psalms 37:11). How fitting is this verse for such a beautiful woman as Irene Bronner. Not only does her name mean peace but she makes her love for the Lord Jesus very apparent, and the humble kindness she shows to all is the greatest example of Christ’s love. Irene’s life is and has been a living prayer, and I have had the great privilege of working for this amazing lady. Happy Birthday, Irene!” – Cindy Ross
- “Happy 90th Birthday to one of the kindest, sweetest people on God’s green earth! Some of my fondest reflections of Irene center on my years working on the floor at the end of a busy fall day. A half hour before closing, Irene would announce, ‘The time is now 8:30 [5:00 on Sundays back in the day] and Bronner’s will be closing in 30 minutes.’ After a long and tiring day, it was like a voice from heaven for all of us! I am also very fond of the time you and Wally attended my high school graduation party after being in the Bavarian Festival parade that same day. Despite your incredibly busy schedule and the fact that I had been an employee for less than a year at that point, yours and Wally’s presence made a huge impression on me, my family and friends in attendance. It is one of the great memories I have from that year. To say my friends were green with envy is an understatement to say the least! Blessings and best wishes for many, many more years of good health and happiness!” – Craig Fick
- “One of my favorite parts of working at Bronner’s is that on the evenings when Irene closes, she always adds a personal touch to the closing announcement by thanking the customers and also thanking the staff for all that we do as well. If it is poor weather, she wishes us safe travels, and if it is a beautiful afternoon, she encourages us to enjoy it. It just gives you a warm feeling inside when you hear that. Thank you, Irene! May you have the happiest of birthdays.” – Stacy Tuck
- “Faith is the seed of inspiration. Happy birthday to someone who never ceases to inspire me and all those around you.” – Connie Rochow
Did You Know?
At 90 years young, Irene is still an adored presence in the Frankenmuth, Michigan store, working hard in Bronner’s reception department!
See her pictured here from her 89th birthday last year which was shared in our DIY tinsel decor post.
90th Birthday Wishes
Please feel free to share your own birthday message with our dear Irene Bronner in the comments below!
19 thoughts on “Happy 90th Birthday, Irene Bronner”
Congratulations to Jeff from Ohio who won a $90 Bronner’s gift card in our contest open to blog subscribers in honor of Irene Bronner’s 90th birthday! We sure appreciate our blog subscribers!
Irene is a true inspriration to all of the working class by still working and doing so with grace and a sweetness everyone should have in the privledge of knowing and working with. I worked for a major company for 30 yrs and with Bronners for 10 and believe me what a difference in the appreciation shown by them. Wally and Irene are the Gods true gift of generous people. Happy birthday Irene and thank you for all that you are.
Dear Irene–We at Wellspring Lutheran Services wish you God’s richest blessings on your 90th birthday! You are a blessing to us as well as the Frankenmuth community. We thank God for you!
Mrs. Irene Bronner,
We honor you on this, your 90th birthday! Thank you for the many, incredible contributions you have made to the Frankenmuth community and more importantly for the example of humble success and grace you exude through your love for the Lord and others. We are TRULY blessed to know you. May the Lord continue to bless you in every possible way.
Happy birthday Irene. You’re an inspiration to all.
Our paths did not cross often, but when they did it was always a very pleasant experience.
Wishing you a very special birthday.
Happy 90th Birthday Irene! My husband brought me to Bronner’s for the first time when we were dating, and I was visiting his family in Novi, Michigan for the first time. That was 21 years ago. I was so impressed by the size of the store, and how it showcased the reason for CHRISTmas. Over the last 17 years that we have been married everytime we are in Michigan we make it to Bronner’s. When at home in Washington State I can and do order from your website. I love to have ornaments personalized for our Godchildren, and other family members. I have received many comments about how nice of a gift they are. Bronner’s has been a nice tradition for us. We wish you a very happy birthday, and we pray you will continue to have good health and enjoy your life.
Happy birthday to a wonderful lady!!!!
I have admired you and your husband since first discovering Bronners! Such vision you all must of had and then to see it ALL come to life!!
On one of our visits there, I just caught a glimpse of a red sports coat. It was pretty crowded that day so I was never able to see who was wearing that coat.
My son is in a wheel chair and loves your store as much as I do. My father had my son in the snack shop and when we met up with them my dad said that they had seen your husband in the red coat!!! I was so upset that I missed him!!!
That bothered me for several years… when I read of your husband’s passing, I cried and mourned as if he was family to me…. I still can’t walk out of the Silent Night Chapel without crying…
Thank you to you and your family for giving us this little slice of heaven here on earth!!! Looking forward to our next visit!!!
Happy birthday to you!!!! Maybe I’ll get lucky some day and get to meet you! The honor would be all mine…
Thank you again fir everything…!
Happy Birthday, Irene.
You (and Wally) were always so kind and generous to visit with us, and to give us a special tour of the store when we came to Michigan to visit (the last time, with our mother, Margaret – who had such fond memories of spending time with you and your siblings on the Pretzer farm during the summers of her childhood).
Sending wishes for good health, and many blessings throughout the year.
Happy Birthday Irene! I grew up in Hartland and enjoyed many special trip to Bronner’s growing up. I now live in Florida with my husband. Every Christmas we come back to Michigan to see my family, and we have made it at tradition to stop at Bronner’s on our way to Mom and Dad’s house. I love your store, and Thank you greatly for keeping such a spectacular place going. And for also keeping Christ in Christmas!!
Happy Birthday Irene… best wishes to you with many more to come.
What a beautiful and obviously, wonderful lady. Happy, happy birthday.
best wishes on
your 90th birthday
I enjoyed visiting
your store as a child
with my folks
and visiting again
with my husband
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU IRENE AND MANY MORE!
God’s richest blessing upon you Irene as you celebrate your milestone birthday. May God continue to bless you and your husband as you have for so many of us. What a tremendous gift you have given to our corner of this country. Now there is four generations of us coming every November to enjoy the fruits of your labor. I Corinthians 16:23
Happy 90th Irene hope you have many, many, more.
Happy Birthday Mrs. Bronner. 90 years young!! You are an inspiration to all of us.
Happy Birthday Irene! What a wonderful legacy you and your husband have given us. I can’t tell you how happy I was to visit your store for the first time last year. I was such a fun and festive experience. I hope your 90th birthday is very special. Congratulations!