Asheville (NC); Park City (UT) â€”This November, the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance (Grassroots), a buying group of nearly 42 independent specialty retailers with 80 plus stores across the United States, held it’s annual Fall Show at the Evergreen Marriott located at Stone Mountain Resort in GA. While the focus of the show was to preview and write orders for F13 product lines, Patagonia sponsored an evening event to celebrate their 40th Anniversary.
As part of the event, Patagonia hosted a contest with the Grassroots retailers. The best vintage Patagonia outfit worn by a retailer at an evening film presentation would win a $5,000 environmental grant to a local non profit of their choice.
While there was in impressive array of contestants, Dan Foster, owner of Mountain Chalet in Colorado Springs, CO proved to be the clear winner. Dan shared his tactics to win, â€œWe've sold Patagonia since their beginning, and since I'm kind of a geezer I've had a while to collect their stuff. Their roots go back to Chouinard Equipment and Great Pacific Iron Works and I dug deep into my closet to find some vintage goods. I also contacted fellow Manitou Springs residents RJ Campbell and Pete Gallagher. They are long time friends, climbers and Patagoniacs and allowed me to borrow a few "ringer" items to round out my collection.â€
â€œWe're real excited to choose Colorado Springs Trails and Open Space Coalition as the recipient for these funds to help with their ongoing environmental efforts in the Pikes Peak regionâ€ adds Dan. â€œPatagonia offered this grant to a Grassroots retailer and they didn't have to make the prize as large as they did to attract interest. Conservative citizens in Colorado Springs never met a tax they liked, but amazingly they voted in a sales tax years ago to buy open space and again later to extend it. I use the trails and daily enjoy the open space backdrop to Colorado Springs that has been preserved through TOSC. We have a lot to be thankful for and, in the spirit of the season and of the grant that Patagonia provided, we decided to match it.
The timing on this isn't perfect as far as our cash flow, but it feels right. Leveraging the grant from Patagonia for a local group is in our DNA- it is the type of thing that outdoor specialty retailers do in their communities.â€
Walt Bailey, East Coast Sales Manager for Patagonia explains their reason for offering the grant â€œPatagonia is celebrating our 40th anniversary in 2013. A large part of that success has come from the business we do with outdoor specialty retailers around the country. The Grassroots Outdoor Alliance has a membership comprised of some of the best such specialty retailers in the industry and we’re proud to be involved with each of those retailers and the group overall. Their ideas around specialty outdoor retail are very similar to ours and it’s very important to us at Patagonia to continue to support their retail members. As such, we thought that celebrating our 40th anniversary with them was fitting. We donate a percentage of all sales done through Grassroots retailers to local environmental organizations in their communities, it’s one of the ways we work together to focus on protecting the places we have to play and ensure their future for the benefit of both the environment and our business together. We decided to focus on having some fun and donating $5,000 to the person with the best â€˜old-school’ Patagonia outfit. There was stiff competition for sure and a lot of participation. But Dan’s outfit took top marks. And we’re really happy to donate this money to a great organization in his community and were blown away at Dan’s generosity to match the donation.â€
â€œThis co-promotion as a great example of outdoor industry cooperation and environmental stewardship,â€ adds Roanne Miller, President of Grassroots Outdoor Alliance. â€œWe want to thank Patagonia for their ongoing support of specialty retail and their amazingly generous financial contributions to a number of environmental causes.â€
About Grassroots Outdoor Alliance (Grassroots):
Grassroots Outdoor Alliance unites independent outdoor retailers as a strong voice to protect and promote the experience of outdoor enthusiasts across the United States. To learn more about Grassroots Outdoor Alliance, visit our website at www.grassrootsoutdoors.com
At Patagonia, we think that business can inspire solutions to the environmental crisis. This means that what we make and how we make it must cause the least harm to the environment. We evaluate raw materials, invest in innovative technologies, and rigorously police our waste. We also use a portion of our sales to support grassroots groups working to make a real difference (our "Earth Tax," to mitigate the damage we do). Our mission is to build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis. For more information about Patagonia please visit www.patagonia.com
About the Trails and Open Space Coalition:
The Trails and Open Space Coalition is committed to the preservation of open space and parks, and the creation of a network of trails, bikeways and greenways for the Pikes Peak region, Celebrating 25 years of service, we advocate for the non-motorized use of these resources and convey a collective voice that promotes their values and stewardship for the benefit of our community. For complete information on the Trails and Open Space Coalition, see www.trailsandopenspaces.org