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Outdoor Retailer Summer Project OR Championed by Exhibiting Sponsors

3M and Outlast Technologies, among others, to support the future of outdoor recreation design, while showcasing innovation in materials on the supply-side

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SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. – June 1, 2009 – Outdoor Retailer, held at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, July 21-24, 2009, today announced that its 2009 Outdoor Retailer Summer Market Project OR competition will be sponsored by a number of exhibiting manufactures.

Supporting sponsors on board for Project OR Cycle 3 include 3M, manufacturer of the synthetic fiber thermal insulation Thinsulate ®, and Outlast Technologies, a primary developer of phase-changing materials and applications. Participating suppliers include CORDURA, Cotton Inc, Schoeller and YKK, among others.

“Today’s industry designers are tasked with creating fashion forward garments without compromising functional performance,” said Jeff Gunia, global marketing manager for 3M Visibility and Insulation Solutions. “We have seen that by bringing together up-and-coming designers, industry experts and the most innovative materials, Project OR is promoting increased fashion and performance for outdoor gear.”

In addition to fostering innovative summer outdoor fashions, supplier-side sponsors see the competition as a strong avenue for promoting their brands, and their newest fabrics, zippers and clothing components.

“This will be the third Project OR that Outlast has participated in, and our first year as a sponsor. We believe this to be an amazing opportunity for young designers as well as a great addition to the OR shows,” said Ashley Tilman, marketing coordinator for Outlast Technologies, Inc. “Project OR allows us to educate the youth of the industry on the products our company offers as well as demonstrate to the market the versatility and value added by our temperature regulating fabrics.”

The first Project OR winning design was a high collar zip front jacket with a built-in backpack, designed by Fashion Institute of Technology student Ryanniel Ocampo. Colorado State University student Ron Rod’s “Rocker” midlayer jacket that included, among other features, an integrated and fully functioning sound system took the winning spot during the Winter Market cycle.

“Based on the past performances of our contestants, Project OR is a clear reflection of contemporary trends in both high fashion and the outdoor industry design scenes,” said Kenji Haroutunian, Outdoor Retailer show director. “We look forward to the designs we will see during this summer’s Project OR and appreciate the support of our exhibiting sponsors.”

For more information about Project OR or to read about Cycle 3 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

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, July 24, to determine a winner. The winning student receives an all-expenses-paid trip to Outdoor Retailer Winter Market ’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 website. 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 Open Air Demo Pineview Reservoir (near Odgen, Utah) on July 20, 2009, followed by the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market at the Salt Palace Convention Center from July 21-24, 2009 in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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