Portland, OR – June 7, 2013 –Tomorrow, KEEN will celebrate the grand opening of its fourth KEEN Garage in downtown Palo Alto, California, not far from Alameda where the company was founded in 2003. The store, the second in the United States, is opening as the company celebrates its 10th year in business.
The official ribbon cutting will take place at 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 8. Shoppers will receive a free tote bag with purchase and Stanford students can receive 10 percent off when they present their school ID.
“With our Palo Alto store opening, we’ve come back home,” said director of marketing Linda Balfour, a native Californian who relocated with the company when it moved its headquarters to Portland in 2006. “Our roots are in this area and we’re glad to reestablish a strong presence in the Bay area. We know Bay area residents love to play outdoors, create possibilities and care about the world around them – all values our company embodies.”
Located at 278 University Avenue, the 2800-square-foot retail space houses more than 300 styles of KEEN footwear, bags and socks.The KEEN Garage is also filled with playful elements of discovery to spark curiosity and exploration. Many of the repurposed-for-a-purpose design features were crafted from locally harvested materials that were destined for scrap or the landfill. Harvested materials include:
- The Douglas Fir flooring was harvested from residences in Palo Alto, Menlo Park and Los Altos.
- The timbers used in the cash wrap and fixtures came from docks in Alameda.
- The fixture over the cash register is made of the hoods of eight Volkswagen Bugs from a collector in Watsonville.
- The lights over cash register area are from a munitions plant in Anaheim.
- The lockers were once used by employees at a Woolworths store.
- The chandelier was designed using wire spool tops from the Monterey Bay area and telegraph insulators.
- The black outsoles behind the KEEN sign near the store entrance are from Portland Factory rejects.
“Designing this store with these materials has been like putting together a living, breathing KEEN jigsaw puzzle,” explained Christa DePoe, VP of global online & retail.
The Garage offers an inviting, inclusive retail space where friends and families can gather to get outfitted or their next adventure, and get inspired about their next trail to hike, beach to comb, river to run, and mountain to explore. Additionally, the retail space is a valuable way for KEEN to interact directly with consumers on a daily basis to receive product feedback, test retail designs and refine marketing programs.
DePoe added, “Fans are exposed to the entire KEEN product line in this space, and are encouraged to share their KEEN stories with our store staff. Our philosophy is that the more we engage directly with our fans, the better we can be.”
Measuring 2,800 square feet, 1,700 square feet of that selling space, the Garage is situated on the corner of University Avenue and Bryant Street. It features a sock rack which has handles that act a little like the old Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Robot game. The kids area is inspired by a playground. Plus the infamous shoe rotisseries present in the other Garages are displayed in the floor-to-ceiling windows.
The KEEN Garage is open:
Monday – Saturday 10am - 8pm (PT)
Sunday 11am - 5pm (PT)
There are three other KEEN Garages located in Portland, Tokyo and Toronto. Balfour said, “We consider these stores detached garages. They are an extension of our office and our brand. We’re glad that the Palo Alto Garage is parked near where the brand was born 10 years ago.
KEEN, Inc. manufactures hybrid outdoor and casual products, including footwear, bags and socks. Founded in 2003 with the launch of the Newport sandal known for its patented toe protection technology, KEEN creates innovative and comfortable products that transition seamlessly from work to play, and enables people to pursue a Hybrid lifestyle: create, play and care. Through its Hybrid.Care giving program, KEEN supports social and environmental organizations around the world. Named one of "America's Best Places to Work" by Outside magazine, KEEN is headquartered in Portland, Ore. KEEN products are available in more than 5,000 retail locations in 60 countries. Discover more about KEEN at keenfootwear.com, facebook.com/keen and twitter.com/keen.