SNEWS best outdoor reads from around the web

Check out the SNEWS reads today, which include stories about violent camping incidents and clothing that offers additional sun protection.
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What did the SNEWS team learn this week that other outdoor industry insiders might find interesting? Read on to find out.

  • We’ve heard all about the good stuff James Curleigh did during his tenure at Keen, but alas, his reign has come to an end. Curleigh recently left Keen to take the executive vice president position at Levi Strauss. Check out our story on the topic, and another from the Oregonian.
  • SNEWS can’t possibly review every product or go to every enchanted outdoor space. Enter Kevin Fonger, owner of Active Gear Review. Fonger offers up heaping helpings of gear reviews, plus a few great stories on awesome places to travel, including this one on Mendicino County.
  • First salmon jerky, then environmental fanaticism? Patagonia is making headlines all over the place. This Bellingham Herald story praises the company for its environmental concerns, which, the article said, trump the company’s sales growth concerns.
  • We looked forward to Memorial Day weekend for months, and it was an epic good time for most of us, but not for these folks in Pennsylvania who were washed out by rains and floods when they camped at the Knoebels Amusement Resort, according to WNEP Channel 16 in Scranton.
  • Given how utterly laid back we all are in the outdoor industry, SNEWS was kind of shocked to read that some of your customers might not be experiencing the same zen-like peacefulness in the outdoors. In Lexington, Ken., a man fired shots at campers, in our very own Boulder County, a man was killed while camping and in Rockdale, Ga., a man went on a shoplifting spree, stocking up on all the essentials for a camping trip he was planning. Turns out crime can make it to even the most peaceful of industries.
  • We didn’t quite believe in Insect Shield until we put on a product featuring the permethrin treatment while landscaping our yard this weekend, and weren't bitten by the critters lurking about. Now, we’re going to have to test out some of these products featured in both the New York Times and New York Magazine, which claim to offer additional sun protection.
  • Climbing Everest is a far off dream for millions of people younger than Tamae Watanabe. But Watanabe, 73, is achieving their dreams and then some. She recently became the oldest woman to scale Mount Everest, beating a record she herself set at age 62. Don’t let any of your customers claim they’re too old for an activity. In fact, print this USA Today article on Watanabe’s feat and put it up in your store!
  • Backcountry.com may not have won a Retailer of the Year Award this year, but that doesn’t seem to matter to the crew who maintains a close relationship with one another. This Desert News story talks about how the company’s CEO has helped create community among employees, and how she herself feels embraced by her own boss, who once swept the snow from her driveway while she was on an extended vacation so she wouldn’t come home to a mess.
  • Are any of your customers headed to the Olympics? Sell them some gear so they can save some money on hotels. This Go Outdoors story discusses how camping during the Summer Olympic games is going to save people a ton of cash, so help them stock up on all the things they’ll need!
  • Good news fellow industry folks! According to Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, the outdoor recreation industry has provided a boost to the economy, even during the “Great Recession.” The CBS News article cited the Outdoor Industry Association data from 2006, stating that $4.3 billion is spent on outdoor recreation goods. Keep up the good work!

Have you read anything interesting you'd like to share with us? Maybe we'll include it next week's column with a little shout out to whoever sent it to us. Send a link to the story with the subject line "SNEWS Reads" to be considered.
--Compiled by Ana Trujillo

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