Multiple companies, including two notable trail running brands, have taken a stand and withdrawn from the 2017 Outdoor Retailer conference, held twice per year, in Salt Lake City.
North Vancouver, B.C.-based Arc’teryx and U.S-based Patagonia, among others, will not be present at the conference that showcases the latest in outdoor gear. Both brands are global leaders in outdoor apparel and manufacture a variety of running gear including shorts, shells, technical shirts and accessories. The two companies also support a team of trail runners. (Arc’teryx is expected to release its first-ever trail running shoe as part of their spring 2017 lineup.)
Patagonia was the first company to announce its withdrawal from the event with Arc’teryx following suit.
According to Gripped, the decision was spurred because “Governor Gary Herbert signed a resolution on Friday [Feb. 3] calling on the federal government to repeal the newly named Bears Ears National Monument.” In 2016, former U.S. President Barack Obama designated 1.35 million acres for the monument. The companies are looking to the Utah government to support public lands and protect wild spaces.
Herbert posted the following message on Twitter on Friday.
Utah is the place for outdoor enthusiasts. Next week, I'll meet with outdoor industry execs & I'm optimistic we will come together. #utpol
— Gov. Gary Herbert (@GovHerbert) February 10, 2017
“Arc’teryx, a company that has long supported preservation of wild spaces, formally announces today its withdrawal from Outdoor Retailer in Salt Lake City, Utah due to the state’s efforts to rescind protection of Bears Ears National Monument and other public lands,” reads a company statement. “The company stands in support of Patagonia’s move to leave Outdoor Retailer in Utah and is following suit. Funds that would have been spent to attend Outdoor Retailer in 2017 will be reallocated to the Conservation Alliance’s new Public Lands Defense Fund.”
“We love Utah, but Patagonia’s choice to return for future shows will depend on the Governor’s actions,” says Patagonia owner Yvon Chouinard. “I’m sure other states will happily compete for the show by promoting public lands conservation.”
“Utah Gov. Gary Herbert signed a resolution on Friday…making it clear that he and other Utah elected officials do not support public lands conservation nor do they value the economic benefits that the outdoor recreation industry brings to their state. Because of the hostile environment they have created and their blatant disregard for Bears Ears National Monument and other public lands, the backbone of our business, Patagonia will no longer attend the Outdoor Retailer show in Utah and we are confident other outdoor manufacturers and retailers will join us in moving our investment to a state that values our industry and promotes public lands conservation.“ – our CEO Rose Marcario. #StandWithBearsEars! Visit the profile link for our response. Photo: @andrew_burr