Outdoor Retailer Selects Students to Compete in Project OR

Exhibiting suppliers' products will take center stage when five skilled design students take on the challenge to create a garment from start to finish in just 48 hours
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SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. - April 26, 2010- Outdoor Retailer announced today the students selected to participate in the fifth edition of "Project OR" during Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010 at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, August 3-6.

Summer Market 2010 Project OR participants are Kaitlyn Doherty, Philadelphia University; Virginia Gibbons, Washington State University; Teresa Hernandez, California State University, Northridge; Christina A. Hill, University of Alabama and Shannon Smith, University of Minnesota.

Project OR is a 48-hour concept-to-prototype student design competition that provides a forum for exhibiting suppliers and future designers to collaborate and showcase creative summer outdoor apparel designs using the market's most innovative materials.

"The students in Project OR's fifth edition come to the competition with a variety of interests and backgrounds," said Kenji Haroutunian, Outdoor Retailer show director. "In reading the competitor bios, I was struck by the diversity and talent that will be coming to inspire the outdoor world at this Summer Market. These designers already have some major accomplishments and recognition under their belt, so the competition, as they say, will be Fierce.'

Project OR provides five of the nation's top design schools with an invitation for one design student to participate in each edition of the competition. While each school has its own vetting process, Washington State University evaluated its students based on pattern making and construction skills along with strong academic performance.

"Project OR gives students an opportunity to learn about a market they might not otherwise consider, and to learn about technical fabrics they haven't had a chance to use in the classroom," said Karen K. Leonas, academic coordinator at Washington State University. "Our design program at Washington State hasn't yet offered a design project in the outdoor market because of the specialty fabrics involved."

Project OR is a prime opportunity for raw material providers to highlight their innovative stories, and for the aspiring designers to apply the innovative fabrics to a new discipline -outdoor products.

"I love the outdoors and athletics, but I haven't been exposed to outdoor apparel design in my schooling," said Shannon Smith. "I'm excited to see new textile technology, network with people in the industry and work under pressure."

Summer Market 2010 Project OR competitors bring a breadth of skills and experience to the fifth edition:

Kaitlyn Doherty- Senior at Philadelphia University, formerly an intern with the Macy's Merchandising Group in the children's design department

Virginia Gibbons- Washington State University junior with a great love for camping, rock climbing, hiking, cycling and kayaking, and experience as the head costumer for a summer camp

Teresa Hernandez- Junior majoring in apparel design and production at CSU Northridge with a natural and simple design philosophy

Christina A. Hill- Apparel and textiles major at the University of Alabama with a passion for scuba diving and lacrosse, and intern for the upcoming Cannes Film Festival

Shannon Smith- Design student at the University of Minnesota and past Juicy Couture intern motivated by sports like snowboarding, hockey and golf.

The participants' expanded biographies are available on the Summer Market Project OR Web page.

Past sponsors and contributing suppliers of Project OR have included 3M, CORDURA® Brand Fabrics, Concept III Textiles, Coville, ITW Nexus, JRC Reflex, Lenzing, Lunabrite Inc., Nüwa Textiles, Outlast, Polartec, PrimaLoft, Proctor & Gamble, Schoeller Textil AG, Sympatex Technologies, United Knitting, Vermont Organic Fiber Company and YKK.

For more information about Project OR sponsorship opportunities or becoming a Project OR supplier, please contact Felicia Hill at felicia.hill@nielsen.com or 415.881.7195.

The Project OR Winter Market 2010 webisodes are available at outdoorretailer.com.

About Project OR
Project OR, produced and recorded live at the Outdoor Retailer trade show, is a 48-hour concept-to-prototype student design competition meant to inspire outdoor product innovation. Outdoor Retailer hosted its first edition of Project OR at Summer Market 2008 and is currently in its fifth edition.

Filmed in a reality-competition type format, Project OR begins with an initial Design Brief that challenges the students to create a garment that is original in its design, and has an innovative use of performance and eco-friendly materials, with a practical application for the outdoor market.

Once initial garment drawings are complete, contestants turn their artistic designs into realistic product concepts through sourcing the latest fabrics, zippers and other clothing components provided by participating Outdoor Retailer supplier exhibitors. After the sourcing stage, contestants spend the remainder of the 48-hour deadline at their work stations (equipped with sewing machines, cutting tables, pressing equipment and tools) building their final prototypes.

Project OR's panel of judges, comprised of Outdoor Retailer-selected designers and industry trend-setters, review each contestant's final prototype and presentation on the last day of the show, to determine the Project OR Summer 2010 winner. The winning student receives an all-expense-paid trip to Outdoor Retailer Winter Market '11 and a half page profile in Textile Insight.

Show attendees are encouraged to follow the students' progress in a designated area on the show floor and via streaming video on the OR Web site. Attendees can submit their vote via a ballot box by the contestant work stations for the Project OR People's Choice Award.

About Outdoor Retailer
Outdoor Retailer (OR), produced by Nielsen Business Media of San Juan Capistrano, Calif., is a full-service trade show company that creates, markets and produces high-quality expos and educational conferences. OR is the leading outdoor industry business-to-business event management company, bringing together manufacturers, retailers, industry advocates and media to conduct the business of outdoor recreation. Now celebrating more than 25 years of successful events, Outdoor Retailer (www.outdoorretailer.com) gathers approximately 40,000 attendees on a semi-annual basis for its Winter and Summer Market shows.

The next opportunity to preview the future of the outdoor industry will start at the Open Air Demo at Jordanelle State Park on August 2, 2010 followed by Outdoor Retailer Summer Market at the Salt Palace Convention Center from August 3-6, 2010 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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MEDIA CONTACTS:
Maura Lansford, SOAR Communications, 801.656.0472 x2 (wk), 817-929-8123 (cell), mlansford@soarcomm.com or
Chip Smith, SOAR Communications, 801.656.0472 x1 (wk), 801-597-7515 (cell) csmith@soarcomm.com

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