Outdoor: Did you hear?…

Vasque promotes Appelsies, BD/Scarpa/K2/Garmont dealer camp, CamelBak expands marketing, OIA meets with Rey, BITE co-sponsoring Everest trip, Outside teams with Honda, Walcoal hires Pine, La Sportiva hires Downing, Access Fund promotes RockStars.

>> Vasque has promoted Rick Appelsies to the position of director/general manager of the Vasque division. Appelsies recently served as the interim general manager. Appelsies has over 12 years of outdoor industry experience. Before joining Vasque, he served as an REI store footwear and outerwear supervisor and as product manager for PUR water filtration systems. Double congrats are due the Appelsies family as he informed SNEWS that his wife went into labor the same day as he received notice of the promotion. “The news sent her into labor! We now have a new baby girl in addition to our 3.5-year-old daughter,” said Appelsies.

>> The first Black Diamond/Scarpa/K2 Telemark/Garmont Dealer Camp was held to rave reviews by all accounts, SNEWS has heard. Seventy-nine folks representing 25 retail shops from Vermont, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Pennsylvania and Quebec took advantage of good snow conditions and great weather on Jay Peak in Vermont from March 18 to 20. According to the folks who attended, the dealer camp offered an “unprecedented opportunity to demo all the new telemark and alpine touring equipment as well as spend time discussing the state of the market with fellow retailers and manufacturers who understand the region best.” The fact remains, not many New England retailers make the trek out to Salt Lake City for Outdoor Retailer, and the established Killington and Stratton ski demos are often too busy to try all the telemark and AT gear. Word is that a bigger and better event is already being planned for next year.

>> CamelBak Products, Inc, is expanding its national television advertising campaign as part of a marketing initiative to reach a wider range of outdoor enthusiasts. Two CamelBak commercials will appear on the Outdoor Life Network (OLN) and on USA, reaching a total of 35 million households. Two 30-second spots will run during OLN’s coverage of the Tour de France, the Road to the Tour, Global Extreme, NORBA National Series, Killer Instinct, Worldcup Mountain Biking and Outside Magazine programs, and during USA’s coverage of the EcoChallenge.

>> OIA members met with USDA Undersecretary Mark Rey on April 3 to discuss their support for protecting roadless areas in America. Those attending the meeting included Dennis Madsen, president, REI; Mike Collins, vice president of public affairs, REI; Kim Coupounas, CEO, GoLite; Frank Hugelmeyer, president, Outdoor Industry Association; and Brandan Hartie, circulation manager, Paddler Magazine. During the meeting, the group delivered over 6,500 postcards addressed to Secretary Veneman in support of protecting roadless areas. The postcards had been signed and sent to Outdoor Industry Foundation (OIF) by a diverse group of outdoor recreation participants all over the country. The postcards were distributed through outdoor retail stores such as Galyan’s and REI and through outdoor recreation publications including Outside and Hooked on the Outdoors and carry the message “Help us protect it today, so we can play tomorrow.”

>> BITE Footwear is co-sponsoring what the company calls “one of the most ambitious trips to Mt. Everest ever.” Team Everest ’03, organized by the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities, will attempt the summit this spring, on the 50th anniversary of the first successful summit of Everest, made by Sir Edmond Hillary and Tenzing Norgay. Team Everest ’03 is comprised of people who have chosen this trip as a means to “Challenge the Myth” that having a disability equates to a lack of capability and potential. In the words of team member Mark Ezzell, “Limitations must never be imposed, they must be discovered. For those of us with disabilities, our limitations have generally been imposed by society, either in the form of laws, policies, attitudes or practices. Going to Everest base camp is another brick removed from the wall of limitations.” For more information about Team Everest ’03, go to:

>> Outside magazine has teamed up with Honda to launch the “Elements of Adrenaline” film festival. The festival will premiere three new adventure films by award-winning filmmaker and kayaker Scott Lindgren. The tour kicks off April 17 at UC San Francisco and will hit 27 college campuses across the country. The first film to be premiered, “Outta Africa” (sic) follows an international team of kayakers as they paddle through the wilds of Africa. “Burning Time” tracks former U.S. Olympians Zack and Reggie Christ as they backcountry ski from British Columbia to Alaska. And “24” showcases the extreme sport of base-jumping. The films will be combined into a single, hour-long Outside Television special to be broadcast on OLN in May.

>> Wacoal Sports Science Corp., makers of CW-X Performance Conditioning Wear, has hired retail executive Karim Pine as the company’s first promotions and marketing manager. Pine, 34, will help CW-X support key accounts and spearhead a series of grassroots and national sponsorships. He will report directly to John L.A. Wilson, corporate vice president. Pine is the former running/cycling buyer for Paragon Sports in New York.

>> La Sportiva is increasing the company’s investment in its Mountain Running business by hiring Shelley Downing as the business unit’s marketing coordinator. Downing was most recently a freelance writer based in Boulder, Colo., and brings years of trail running experience with her to the job.

>> The Access Fund is now presenting the Athlete Ambassador Team and RockStars on its website, The Athlete Ambassadors and RockStars are professional climbers who publicly represent the Access Fund and impart its mission of keeping climbing areas open and conserving the climbing environment. The Team page will feature the names of Athlete Ambassadors and RockStars, with links to each climber’s photo, biography, list of sponsors and testimonial heralding why he or she supports the Access Fund.

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