Eastern Mountain Sports Celebrates 40 Years as Outdoor Resource

Return to Core Outdoor Roots, Revival of School Programs, New Store Formats and Expansions in the East Mark the Specialty Outdoor Retailer’s Milestone
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Eastern Mountain Sports, a leading specialty outdoor retailer, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this fall by offering consumers expanded offerings of its outdoor apparel and gear through larger formatted stores and a return to its core outdoor roots on which the retailer was founded. The new stores, which Eastern Mountain Sports has already successfully opened in five northeast market locations, are double the size of previous stores and feature an experiential shopping layout with visuals designed to enhance and streamline the shopping experience.

“Eastern Mountain Sports was founded by two climbers with the intention of providing quality gear at prices that reflect honest value,” said Will Manzer, president and CEO of Eastern Mountain Sports. “As we mark this important milestone, we are more focused now on that mission – and being a true outfitter for the outdoor athlete. “Our new store formats are intended to engage a younger consumer while also staying true to customers who have been with us for the last 40 years. The success of these store expansions has been even better than expected, and we look forward to many more in the next few years as we continue to concentrate on markets in the Northeast where the brand was born.”

The return to Eastern Mountain Sports' core outdoor roots also means a revitalization of its renowned School programs. Its Climbing School is the oldest in North America. The Eastern Mountain Sports School programs not only educate consumers but also train Eastern Mountain Sports staff, known as “Guides,” to deliver authentic, credible and knowledgeable service to our outdoor customers. The School programs include Climb, Kayak, Ski (telemark and snowboard) and Mountain Biking.

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“The Eastern Mountain Sports School programs are integrated into all facets of our business,” continued Manzer. “The authenticity and credibility of our instructors is a touchstone for everything we do.”

The Eastern Mountain Sports new store format devotes more inventory to its core outdoor heritage and other pursuits that outdoor enthusiasts are most likely to engage in, including climbing, mountain biking, trail running, hiking, camping and kayaking. With a focus on building an active outdoor community, each new store features an interactive “Hub” gathering area for sharing community, upcoming events and adventure planning information. The new store locations continue the tradition of Eastern Mountain Sports' Foot Gurus – sales associates specially trained to analyze feet and custom fit athletic footwear.

Since late 2004, the company has been under new management led by Will Manzer, formerly president of Perry Ellis menswear. Manzer brought in a new design team, lead by Scott Hutsenpiller who was previously with Nike ACG that has expanded the Eastern Mountain Sports proprietary product offerings. These developments include SYNC, its outerwear layering system, Techwick, its versatile base layer and moisture management pieces that excel in a variety of conditions, and the EMS® Workhorse Pack series for men and women.

Founded in 1967 by two New England rock climbers in Wellesley, Mass., and based in Peterborough, N.H., Eastern Mountain Sports is one of the nation's leading outfitters of outdoor gear, clothing, footwear and accessories with 67 retail stores in 12 states. Eastern Mountain Sports designs and sells products for outdoor adventurers who participate in a variety of sports, such as mountaineering, backpacking, camping, hiking, adventure racing, climbing, kayaking, mountain biking and snow sports. Eastern Mountain Sports product and technology is tested by its product development and quality assurance teams in conjunction with the Eastern Mountain Sports Climbing, Kayaking and Ski Schools. More information is available at www.ems.com.

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