Report from the Outdoor Retailer – What We Liked

Imagine you’re at a mall on the weekend before Christmas and all the crowds around you are fit, driven, and over-caffeinated. That’s pretty much the scene at the Outdoor Retailer at the Salt Palace convention center. Thousands of vendors and tens of thousands of buyers, managers, and working media types (like me) are meeting. It’s […]

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UtahOutsider braves Outdoor Retailer

Attending the Outdoor Retailer in Salt Lake City is a bit like heading to the mall on Christmas Eve: be prepared for nuttiness and overstimulation. Read about snacks we discovered at the OR. Read about last year’s OR visit. That said, the OR presents much cooler stuff than any mall. Outdoor recreationalists who manage to […]

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UtahOutsider at Outdoor Retailer

How odd to be inside all week. At UtahOutsider, it goes against the grain. This week, however, was spent entirely indoors, horseless, dogless, trail-less. Small sacrifice for what will be gained for our readership! Specifically we were at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Salt Palace was home to Outdoor […]

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Babbitt to Outdoor Industry: get your act together now

Utah and Bruce Babbitt have a history. In the 1990s, when he led efforts to designate nearly two million acres of the Grand Staircase Escalante area as a National Monument, folks here hung him in effigy. How foul was the vibe? The ceremony had to take place across the border in Arizona. The former Arizona […]

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OR Swan Song in Salt Lake

Last month, we headed to the Outdoor Retailer, held for the last time at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City. Why was this the final episode of a decades-long run, drawing tens of thousands to Utah and generating millions of dollars for the city? Utah politicians have been pretty outspoken in their […]

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Hasta La Vista, Utah

The Outdoor Retailer, the multi-million dollar exposition force which lived in Salt Lake City for 21 years, has pulled up stakes and is headed to neighboring Colorado. Beginning in January, 2018, the OR will be hosted by Denver. Read this open letter to Utah from Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard. Read Washington Post article on the […]

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Tempest Williams wows OR crowd

The Outdoor Retailer is all about the selly-selly-sell. Thousands of outdoor gear exhibitors tout their latest socks, stoves, skis, shoes, snowshoes, and shovels in the effort to wow thousands of buyers (or not). Increasingly, however, it’s also about organizing and affirming the outdoor industry’s growing political clout in order to tackle some serious and pressing […]

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