Local outdoor gear providers hoping new downtown Steamboat pop-up brings opportunity
A new downtown pop-up store will provide several local outdoor manufacturers a place to showcase their products, bring attention to their brands and sell their gear this holiday season — and if all goes well, maybe longer.
“We called it Hala GearSpace from the start because we always picture trying to get some of the local brands and just sort of a smattering of different things in there,” said Peter Hall, who owns the space at 910 Yampa St. in downtown Steamboat Springs. “Finally, we got our paddle sports assortment in place, but now we’re looking at what can we do in the offseason and how can we keep it a little more vital throughout the year.”
Hala will be one of several brands featured in the pop-up along with Town Hall Outdoor Co., Grass Sticks, Fish Pond, Northland Skis and River Collective Co.
Robin Hall, founder of the Steamboat-based, children’s outdoor apparel company Town Hall, said the idea was born during a monthly gathering fondly called “Garage Beers,” where founders of the 21 different outdoor gear manufacturers in the area gather to talk about the challenges they face, where they have found success and to discuss ideas that can help promote the industry in Steamboat. The pop-up store was one of those ideas.
“Peter was kind enough because he has the space and he brought it to life for us,” said Robin Hall, who is not related to Peter. “It’s really, really exciting. We’re going do some events, and if things go well — and we have enough bandwidth, time and energy — we might have a couple of events bleeding out into the new year and February and March. It’ll just be a great way for people to get a view into what the great brands Steamboat has to offer.”
The pop-up is slated to open Nov. 26 on Small Business Saturday. Peter Hall said the store is expected to be open from noon to 6 p.m. at least through December. Robin Hall said the store will often be staffed by the founders themselves.
“We will be open for sure through December,” Robin Hall said. “Then we hope to do something for Winter Carnival, Presidents‘ Week and other key times throughout the winter when we want to pop up and open up again.”
She hopes the pop-up will bring attention to the many places that produce outdoor gear in the area. The featured businesses include Hala, which sells paddle boards and equipment; Grass Sticks, which makes bamboo ski poles; Eagle Creek, which produces luggage, packs, duffels and other adventure gear; Fishpond, which makes fishing, lifestyle and field gear; River Collective Co., which makes stickers, hats and shirts with 20% of wholesale revenue going to various water sheds. Northland Skis, which makes handcrafted skis in Steamboat, is also expected to take part.
“We’re so excited to have our product on display in town, and we appreciate Hala creating the opportunity for us,” said Travis Campbell, owner and CEO of Eagle Creek. “As a travel brand, we love being able to service the surrounding communities here alongside so many other great brands from the Yampa Valley.”
Robin Hall hopes the new pop-up will give these brands a chance to connect to the community, and remind people about the value they bring.
“We‘re all going to have our gear in there for sale, and it will be be manned by the founders who will come together, and some of us work from time-to-time,” Robin Hall said. “We will roll up our sleeves and sell each other‘s gear and get to know each other‘s gear as well, which would be really fun. This is just another great way for people to shop locally and give back to our great community, which is to shop with these local brands. We all have really neat gifting opportunities and ideas for everyone in this town.”
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatPilot.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.
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