Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 37

Feature .02
comes from a place that acknowledges that
we are already spending time outdoors, we
can introduce new activities."

THE OUTDOORS CAN MEAN DIFFERENT
things to different people. Certainly there
is more than one way of spending time outside, and if we shift our thinking to a new
narrative that includes different characters,
our perception of the outdoors instantly
expands. Outdoor Afro (OA) is a national
institution that helps African Americans
in particular to define their own stories
about how they enjoy the natural world. In
Charleston, South Carolina, local OA organizer Adrienne Troy-Frazier works with Joe
Campbell, owner of Sea Kayak Carolina, to
create paddling trips for area members.
"He also offers OA free meeting space for
our other gatherings," she says. "We are able
to fully control the historical narrative on our
paddling trips with him, which was a major
challenge with other outfitters here."
Trips with Outdoor Afro typically include a
detailed lesson on the cultural contributions
of African Americans to the natural sites the
groups visit. They learn about people of the
past who share their heritage and made an
impact on the places they explore. Within this

"IF YOU WANDER AROUND THE GREAT OUTDOOR
PROVISION CO., YOU'RE IN AVERY HIGH-END-ECONOMIC, WHITE, 50-YEAR HISTORY NEIGHBORHOOD
SHOPPING CENTER."
historical context, participants can envision themselves as part of the landscape
they are paddling through. This sense of inclusion affirms the understanding that they
truly belong.
"Joe has fitted at least six OA members
with sea kayaks in the last three years and
provides affordable, sometimes free, private paddle instruction to several members,"
Troy-Frazier says. "At least one has become
ACA (American Canoe Association) certified.
Several others are working toward the same
with his guidance. He has helped us build a
Black paddling community in a place where it
is an activity deemed exclusive to whites."
Sea Kayak Carolina is a prime example
of the positive effects that direct engagement with communities of color can achieve.
Having purchased the business in 2012, Joe
Campbell runs his operation like a start-up,
seeking out and expanding his customer base
wherever possible. As a purveyor of high-end

kayaks and paddling equipment, he introduces new users to the sport and encourages
them to become avid users. But Campbell is
the first to admit it's not easy. "I don't fit the
demographic, but I didn't think that would
be a problem at the time," he says. "But I realize now it's one of the many challenges."
Campbell is Black. Despite a great deal of
personal passion for sea kayaking as well as
professional expertise, he sometimes struggles to convince his mostly white customers
that he can provide them with the goods and
services they need. "A lot of people just aren't
used to seeing a Black guy with dreadlocks
paddling a sea kayak. To this day, I have customers who've told me 'I was warned about
you so I wouldn't get caught off guard'," he
says with a chuckle. "So I understand that's
a limitation and a hurdle that I have to jump
over each time. It's part of the business, getting people to come in and understand that I
offer the same quality of service as the competition. It's all part of it for me."
But it's important to realize that just as
Campbell works to build rapport and personal relationships with his customers,
all speciality retailers face the same challenge. Whether we're talking about kayaking, camping, or backpacking, it's the job
of outdoor retailers to share their love of
nature with everyone and to make them
feel welcome.
"I want people from all over the world
to come out and kayak with us. I especially want the local community to feel super
comfortable with water, kayaking, and just
getting out there and enjoying themselves,"
Campbell says. "That's really the ultimate
goal. Yeah there's profit involved, but I've
been blessed with access. Now I want to give
that access to other people." O.R.
* Despite numerous attempts to interview
this Alpine Shop customer directly, the author
could not affirm her consent to be named in this
story. Though her Facebook exchange is freely
available to be read online, we use the alias
Helen to protect her identity and her privacy.

Winter 2019 / OUTDOOR RETAILER 37



Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019

OUTDOOR RETAILER - WINTER 2019
CONTENTS
THE PULSE
HEADLINES
MERCHANDISING
MARKETING
BIG PICTURE
GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE
CASE STUDY
IDEAS
WHITNEY CONNELL
SHERYL DEBOARD
EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH
RESEARCH
NEPTUNE’S REVIVAL
MOVING THE NEEDLE
SKI TRADITIONS
BREAD+BUTTER
KNOW YOUR WINTER SPORTS
MADE IN AMERICA
WORK WEAR
COUNTER CULTURE
THE VIEW
HOW I GOT HERE
#REPLIFE
FROM THE ROAD
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - OUTDOOR RETAILER - WINTER 2019
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - Cover2
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 1
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - CONTENTS
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 3
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 4
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 5
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 6
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 7
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 8
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - THE PULSE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - HEADLINES
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 11
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - MERCHANDISING
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 13
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - MARKETING
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - BIG PICTURE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 17
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - CASE STUDY
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 19
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 20
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - IDEAS
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - WHITNEY CONNELL
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - SHERYL DEBOARD
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 25
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - RESEARCH
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 27
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - NEPTUNE’S REVIVAL
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 29
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 30
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 31
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 32
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 33
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - MOVING THE NEEDLE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 35
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 36
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 37
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - SKI TRADITIONS
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 39
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 40
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 41
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 42
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - BREAD+BUTTER
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - KNOW YOUR WINTER SPORTS
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 45
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - MADE IN AMERICA
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 47
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - WORK WEAR
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 49
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - COUNTER CULTURE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 51
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - THE VIEW
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 53
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 54
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 55
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 56
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 57
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - HOW I GOT HERE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 59
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - #REPLIFE
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 61
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - FROM THE ROAD
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 63
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - 64
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - Cover3
Outdoor Retailer - Winter 2019 - Cover4
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