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Exhibitors Back 2010 Winter Market Project OR as Sponsors & Suppliers

3M and Hyperbola, among others, invest in outdoor apparel design competition OR hosts to feature the versatility of innovative materials on the supply side

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SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. – Jan. 6, 2010 – Outdoor Retailer today announced the exhibitors participating as sponsors and suppliers in the student design competition, Project OR, held at Outdoor Retailer Winter Market on the main show floor at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, January 21-24.

The presenting sponsor for Project OR Cycle 4 is 3M, manufacturer of the synthetic fiber thermal insulation Thinsulate ®. The supporting sponsor for Cycle 4 is Hyperbola, manufacturer of BOLA-TEX soft shell.

Participating material suppliers include Advanced Flexible Materials, Brookwood, CORDURA, Cotton, King Tech, Nuwa, Polartec, Schoeller and YKK.

Presenting sponsor 3M sees the competition as a platform for emerging designers and for innovation in the industry. 3M will provide contestants with a variety of materials to help them throughout the design and construction processes, including recent 3M fabric innovations and work station materials such as 3M Scotch Products and 3M Post-Its.

“The Project OR challenge is rooted in education and innovation- it allows designers to redefine the status quo in the industry and uses technology and science to influence consumers’ lives,” said Jeff Gunia, global marketing manager for 3M. “That’s what 3M has done for more than 100 years, and that’s why we’re excited to be part of Project OR.”

Utilizing new design talent to demonstrate the potential of the latest outdoor fabrics and clothing components draws Outdoor Retailer supplier exhibitors to become Project OR sponsors and suppliers.

“Project OR helps increase suppliers’ visibility to exhibiting brands and adds new life and creativity to the industry,” said Jenny Cho, Hyperbola spokesperson. “We see Project OR as a great opportunity to show how Hyperbola products bring out designers’ boldest concepts and add to the outdoor winter apparel story.”

Past Project OR winners have told the apparel story using a variety of materials, from Ron Rod’s “The Rocker,” a midlayer jacket with a built in sound system designed with technical eco-friendly fabrics, to Lindsey Schuyler’s “Femme Fatale,” an hourglass-shaped jacket made with components like recycled fabric, glow-in-the-dark trim and organic cotton webbing.

“We created Project OR to demonstrate the crucial role suppliers play in the design process,” said Kenji Haroutunian, Outdoor Retailer show director. “What the contestants experience is analogous to the demands designers face in the outdoor industry, where creativity and the end product hinge on the style and function of the components available to them. OR is grateful to the sponsors and suppliers that help us create this design experience on the show floor.”

For more information about Project OR or to read about Cycle 4 participants, please visit the Project OR event page.

For more information about Project OR sponsorship opportunities or becoming a Project OR supplier, please contact Marisa Nicholson at Click here for the sponsorship submission form.

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 innovative outdoor concepts.

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, an innovative use of performance and eco-friendly materials and has a practical application for the outdoor market.

Once initial garment designs are complete, contestants turn their drawings into product using the latest fabrics, zippers and other clothing components provided by participating Outdoor Retailer supplier exhibitors. With sourcing complete, contestants spend the remainder of the 48-hour deadline at their work station (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, January 24, to determine a winner. The winning student receives an all-expenses-paid trip to Outdoor Retailer Summer ‘10 and a profile in Textile Insight.

Show attendees are encouraged to follow the students’ progress in designated areas throughout the show 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 ( 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 All Mountain Demo at the Snowbasin Ski Resort in Ogden, Utah, January 20, 2010, followed by the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market at the Salt Palace Convention Center from January 21-24, 2010 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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Maura Lansford, SOAR Communications, 801-523-3730, or
Chip Smith, SOAR Communications, 801-523-3730,