REI Co-op will close stores on Black Friday; will pay all 12,000 employees to #OptOutside with family and friends

Outdoor co-op launches experiential search engine powered by millions who have chosen to #OptOutside

SEATTLE, 2017-Nov-01 — /EPR Retail News/ — For the third year running, REI Co-op, the nation’s largest consumer co-op and specialty outdoor retailer, has announced that it will close its 151 stores on Black Friday, process no online sales and pay all 12,000 employees to #OptOutside with family and friends.

Each year, REI gives more than 70 percent of its profits back to the outdoor community. Rather than seek to pull shoppers inside for this Thanksgiving weekend, REI is launching a new experiential search engine at REI.com/opt-outside to help inspire and enable people to get outside. It’s powered by the individual and collective experiences of the outdoor community and free for all to use.

“We are doing this again to unite people and to find common ground in the outdoors,” said REI CEO Jerry Stritzke. “Right now, I think people are looking for a moment to take a breath, reground themselves and come together. More than 700 organizations and nearly 8 million people have joined #OptOutside over the past two years. We could not be more thankful. But last year we stepped back and said we can do more. We asked how we could offer new practical tools and inspiration. So we have captured the experiences of the outdoor community and organized them in a way that no one has done before.”

At the heart of this year’s effort, the new experiential search engine from REI is designed to inspire millions of people to #OptOutside. It features images pulled entirely from #OptOutside user-generated content (UGC) on Instagram, augmented with real-time information about locations and experiences across the country. For example, users who click on an image of a hiker can see the name of the specific trail featured, the trail’s difficulty rating, directions to the trailhead, recent user reviews of the experience and related expert advice from REI. Beginning today and leading up to Black Friday, the co-op will release 20 films featuring this community-created imagery to connect people through their shared #OptOutside experiences.

The co-op’s efforts to get more people outside do not begin and end with #OptOutside. Year-round, the co-op partners with hundreds of local and national organizations, nonprofits and governmental agencies, championing the outdoor life by implementing and encouraging others to adopt the highest sustainability standards and working to increase access to the outdoors for everyone.

About the REI Co-op
REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of more than 16 million members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 151 stores in 36 states. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.comREI-Garage.com or the free REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. You can take the trip of a lifetime with REI Adventures, a global leader in active adventure travel that runs more than 170 custom-designed itineraries worldwide. The REI Outdoor School is run by professionally-trained, expert-instructors who teach beginner-to advanced-level courses about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to—and steward—the outdoor places that inspire us all.

Source: REI

More than 365 organizations and more than 1 million people joined REI in choosing to #OptOutside on Black Friday

SEATTLE, 2016-Nov-08 — /EPR Retail News/ — Less than two weeks after announcing #OptOutside, more than 365 organizations and more than 1 million people have joined REI in choosing to #OptOutside on Black Friday. The response more than doubles the number of partners involved in 2015, and includes national and local organizations encouraging their members to #OptOutside or hosting outdoor activities for people to choose trails over sales on Black Friday.

#OptOutside has provided the outdoor community and our nonprofit partners an incredible platform to share the transformative power of the outdoors. The response it’s received in its second year is a powerful reminder of how this idea connects with people at an individual and emotional level,” said Jerry Stritzke, REI CEO and president.

#OptOutside partner highlights include:

  • Scores of parks and nonprofits partners are opening outdoor spaces for free, including all state parks in Colorado, Delaware, Kansas and Minnesota.
  • The National Interscholastic Cycling Association is encouraging all 10,000 student athletes and 4,000 coaches to take over 600 teams across the country out on rides on Black Friday.
  • Nonprofits like the Washington Trails Association with deep ties to local outdoors spaces are hosting volunteer work parties to steward trails.
  • The Massachusetts Audubon Society is leading bird enthusiasts through sanctuaries across the state on Black Friday and the day after, and for bird lovers in Michigan, the Huron-Clinton Metromarks are hosting an “Owl Prowl” on November 25.
  • Downhill skiers, show shoe enthusiasts and fat bike riders in Washington can enjoy Methow Trails in Winthrop Washington for free on Black Friday.
  • The Greenway Foundation in Denver will take elementary school students to the South Platte River for educational field trips all month leading up to Thanksgiving week.
  • Girl Trek is organizing 100 “Family 5K” walks across the country designed to get families moving, complete with race bibs and t-shirts.

CJ Goulding at the Children & Nature Network and Morgan Dixon and Vanessa Garrison at Girl Trek have also voiced their support of #OptOutside on the REI Co-op Journal.

Contact:
REI Public Affairs
(253) 395-5958
prrequests@rei.com

Source: REI

REI thanks organizations who committed to create new holiday tradition and invites more to join #OptOutside

SEATTLE, 2016-Oct-28 — /EPR Retail News/ — CEO Jerry Stritzke invites nonprofits and companies with shared values to join the growing movement of 300 national and local organizations advocating for time outside with family and friends

REI, the outdoor co-op, thanks hundreds of nonprofit, public and private sector partners who announced the launch of #OptOutside yesterday. Prominent national and local organizations shared that they are joining with REI employees to create a new tradition for people to reconnect with friends and family outdoors at this important time of year. In the coming weeks, #OptOutside will lift up and celebrate people who dedicate their lives to the outdoors.

In a public letter on the Co-op Journal, Stritzke writes, “REI is committed to advancing this conversation about the outdoors and its benefits. This is a multifaceted topic, so for the next month you will hear from experts across the outdoor community about the power of nature to heal, the value of childhood play outdoors, the importance of nurturing and conserving our public lands, and the increasing need for diversity in the outdoors.”

Alex Thompson, REI vice president of Public Affairs, said, “Nonprofits and government agencies that steward the outdoors are at the heart of #OptOutside, but we also believe that many unexpected organizations can help remove barriers to the outdoors. We need to talk more about how we can collaborate to give people access to the benefits of the outdoors, even if it isn’t a part of their lives today.”

REI will publish viewpoints from leaders of organizations committed to advocating for the outdoors throughout #OptOutside. Upworthy, the mission-driven media company, plans to drive conversation about the important mental and physical health benefits of being outside. For those who don’t know where to go for outdoor adventure, the co-op has launched new online activity-finding tool to help people find places to explore nearby and further afield. REI employees have curated an extensive list of trails and parks, many nurtured by the groups joining #OptOutside.

The organizations choosing to #OptOutside and to bring others with them represent a range of perspectives, but share a common belief in the value of time spent in nature. New #OptOutside activities keep rolling in. They include:

  • Over 20 friends groups that dedicate themselves to supporting National Parks have indicated they’ll be urging Americans to visit their favorite National Park unit on Black Friday. The groups include Yosemite Conservancy, Yellowstone Association, Washington’s National Park Fund, Friends of the Smokies (N.C.), the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore (Wis.) and Friends of Acadia (Maine).
  • As with last year, entrance fees for all 75 Minnesota state parks and recreation areas will be waived on Black Friday.
  • The YMCA of the USA shares REI’s commitment to family and an outdoor life. The national Y will be asking 51 Let’s Move Outside cities to organize free outside activities for kids and families on Black Friday. The goal of Let’s Move Outside is to create partnerships among community organizations and government land managers to get more youth outside.
  • The Trust for Public Land – a national organization that helps communities raise funds, acquire and protect land, plan and design parks – will hold a nationwide photo contest for people to show off their favorite places to #OptOutside.
  • The Association for Experiential Education – a professional association of the nation’s outdoor educators – will promote #OptOutside to the nearly 700 attendees at its annual conference later this week.
  • Hundreds of local stewardship, outdoor education and environmental organizations will activate in the run-up to, and on Black Friday. Examples include:
    • Biking and mountain biking events will be hosted by Southern Outdoor Bicycle Association of Jacksonville (SORBA Jax), the Park at Big Marsh (Chicago), San Diego Mountain Biking Association and Singletrack Advocates (Anchorage).
    • Huron-Clinton Metroparks (Mich.) is hosting an Evening Owl Prowl. After in indoor class, the group will head out to see if it can attract Screech Owls with recorded calls.
    • The Buckeye Trail Association – the stewards of a trail system that goes all the way around Ohio – will host a series of outdoor events among its different chapters.
    • Friends of Island Lake (Mich.) will host a hike to celebrate its new 5-mile Hickory Ridge Hike and Ski Trail.
    • Friends of the Wissahickon (Philadelphia) will urge people to complete a hike, bike or ride on all 50 miles of trail in the Wissahickon Valley Park in the run-up to Black Friday.
    • The Rock Creek Conservancy (Washington, D.C.) will host an Unplugged Day.
    • Canyon Adventures in Southern California is offering a free one-day, Level One Canyoneering Class, including lessons on wilderness safety and preservation.
    • Methow Trails (Wash.) is opening its ski trails for free to REI members.
    • Islandwood on Bainbridge Island, Wash. will open the trails on its 255-acre campus to the public for a special #OptOutside edition of its quarterly Afternoon on the Trails.
    • The Salem Area Trail Alliance (Ore.) will hold a work party at Silver Falls State Park.
    • Washington Trails Association will host trail work days for anyone who want to volunteer.
    • Other nonprofits – like the Tahoe Rim Trail Association (Calif.) and Conejos Clean Water (Colo.) are closing and giving their employees a paid day off.
  • The co-op also recognizes Hellstern Middle School (Springdale, Ariz.), who will coordinate family friendly outdoor activities on Black Friday.

Nonprofit and Government Partners:

  • 52 Hike Challenge
  • Access Fund
  • AIRIE
  • Alaska Wilderness League
  • Alliance For The Great Lakes
  • Amargosa Conservancy
  • American Alpine Club
  • American Camp Association
  • American Hiking Society
  • American River Conservancy
  • American Rivers
  • American Trails
  • American Whitewater
  • Amigos de Bolsa Chica
  • Anacostia Watershed Society Inc.
  • Anoka County Parks
  • Anne Springs Close Greenway
  • Apostle Islands National Lakeshore
  • Appalachian Trail Conservancy
  • Archaeology Southwest
  • Arizona Trail Association
  • Armand Bayou Nature Center
  • Association for Experiential Education
  • Association of Outdoor Recreation and Education
  • Atlanta Beltline Partnership
  • Austin Parks Foundation
  • Backcountry Hunters and Anglers
  • Bay Area Ridge Trail Council
  • Big Bend National Park
  • Big Marsh
  • Black Girls Do Bike
  • Blue Sky Funders
  • Bob Jones Nature Center
  • Boston Harbor Now
  • Boulder Climbing Community
  • Boy Scout Troop 44 (Renton, Wash.)
  • Buckeye Trail Association
  • C&O Canal Trust Inc.
  • California State Parks
  • California State Parks Foundation
  • Camber Outdoors
  • Canyon Adventures
  • Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy
  • Carolina Thread Trail
  • Catamount Institute
  • Central Ohio Mountain Biking Organization
  • Central Oregon Land Watch
  • Children & Nature Network
  • Choose Outdoors
  • Cincinnati Off-Road Alliance
  • City Of Lakes Nordic Ski Foundation, The Loppet Foundation
  • City of Olympia, Parks Stewardship
  • City Parks Alliance
  • Clark Fork Coalition
  • Clean Jordan Lake
  • Climbing Resource Advocates for Greater Sacramento
  • Colorado Canyons Association
  • Colorado Mountain Bike Association
  • Colorado Outdoor Recreation Industry Office
  • Colorado Parks & Wildlife
  • Colorado Youth Corps
  • Commonweal Conservancy, Inc.
  • Conejos Clean Water
  • Conservation Alliance
  • Conservation Colorado
  • Conservation Lands Foundation
  • Conservation Legacy
  • Consortium for Ocean Leadership
  • Continental Divide Trail Coalition
  • Creation Justice Ministries
  • Denali Education Center
  • Dolan Springs Trail System
  • Dunes Learning Center
  • EarthCorps
  • East Coast Greenway Alliance
  • Eastern National
  • Ecotrust
  • Essex Heritage
  • Everett Mountain Search & Rescue
  • Families in Nature
  • First State National Historical Park
  • Florida Hikes
  • Forest Park Conservancy
  • Forest Preserve Foundation
  • Forterra
  • Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area
  • Friends of Acadia
  • Friends of Capitol Forest
  • Friends of Crowders Mountian, Inc.
  • Friends of Eagle River Nature Center Inc.
  • Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
  • Friends of Island Lake State Recreation Area
  • Friends of Organ Mountains
  • Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness
  • Friends of Sloan Canyon, NV
  • Friends of Tandy Hills Natural Area
  • Friends of the Arizona Joshua Tree Forest
  • Friends of The Blue Hills Charitable Trust
  • Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness
  • Friends of the Chicago River
  • Friends of the Columbia Gorge
  • Friends of the High Line Inc.
  • Friends of the Inyo
  • Friends of the Lower Olentangy Watershed (FLOW)
  • Friends of the Mississippi River
  • Friends of the Wissahickon
  • Friends of Trees
  • Friends of Van Cortland Park
  • Friends of Virgin Islands National Park
  • Friends of White Clay Creek State Park
  • Gallatin Valley Land Trust
  • Galveston Bay Foundation
  • Georgia Trail Summit
  • GetOutHereHouston.org
  • Girl Trek
  • Glacier National Park Conservancy
  • Grand Canyon Association
  • Grand Staircase Escalante Partners
  • Great Outdoors Colorado
  • Great Parks
  • Great Peninsula Conservancy
  • Hellstern Middle School
  • Hill Country Conservancy and the Violet Crown Trail
  • Hip Camp
  • Hoosier Mountain Bike Association
  • Houston Arboretum & Nature Center
  • Houston Wilderness
  • Huron-Clinton Metroparks Foundation
  • Ice Age Trail Alliance
  • Idaho Conservation League
  • Idaho Trails Association
  • IMBA
  • Inspiring Connections Outdoors – Sierra Club Outdoors
  • Islandwood, Bainbridge
  • Jacksonville State University Field School
  • Jefferson County Open Space
  • Kansas Wildlife, Parks & Tourism
  • Katy Prairie Conservancy
  • Keep Indianapolis Beautiful
  • Kwiaht
  • Latino Outdoors
  • Lawrence – Hopewell Trail Corporation
  • Leave No Trace
  • Legacy Parks Foundation
  • Los Padres Forest Association Inc.
  • Los Padres ForestWatch
  • Lower Colorado River Authority
  • Marine Conservation Institute
  • Mat-Su Ski Club
  • Methow Trails
  • Mid-Atlantic Off Road Enthusiasts
  • Minnesota State Parks and Trails
  • Mississippi National River and Recreation Area (Coldwater Spring)
  • Mississippi Park Connection
  • Mojave Desert Land Trust
  • Montana Conservation Corps
  • Montana Wilderness Association
  • MTB Missoula
  • National Association of State Park Directors
  • National Forest Foundation
  • National Park Foundation
  • National Park Service
  • National Park Service Chesapeake Bay
  • National Parks Conservation Association
  • National Recreation and Park Association
  • Natural Leaders Network
  • Nature Bridge
  • Nature Discovery Center
  • Nearby Nature
  • New Mexico Volunteers for the Outdoors
  • New Mexico Wilderness Alliance
  • New York-New Jersey Trail Conference Inc.
  • Newport Bay Naturalists and Friends
  • North American Association for Environmental Education
  • North Cascades Institute
  • North Country Trail Association
  • Norwalk River Watershed Association Inc.
  • OAK
  • Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center
  • Openlands
  • Oregon Natural Desert Association Inc.
  • Oregon State Parks Foundation
  • Outdoor Afro
  • Outdoor Alliance
  • Outdoor Foundation
  • Outdoor Nation
  • Outside Las Vegas Foundation
  • PA Cleanways d.b.a. Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful
  • Pacific Crest Trail Association
  • Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation
  • Palmetto Conservation Foundation
  • Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy
  • Park Pride Atlanta Inc.
  • Partnership for the 21CSC
  • Pennsylvania Parks and Forest Foundation
  • People for Bikes
  • Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
  • Placer Land Trust
  • Potomac Appalachian Trail Club Inc.
  • Potomac Conservancy
  • Rails to Trails Conservancy
  • Regional Parks Foundation
  • River Relief Inc.
  • Riverfront Recapture Inc.
  • Riverside State Park Foundation
  • Rock Creek Conservancy
  • Rocky Mountain Field Institute
  • Sail Sand Point
  • Salem Area Trail Alliance
  • San Diego Canyonlands Inc.
  • San Diego Mountain Biking Association
  • San Diego River Park Foundation
  • San Diego Water Trail Association
  • San Dieguito River Valley Land Conservancy
  • San Mateo County Parks And Recreation Foundation
  • Santa Monica Mountains Fund
  • Save Our Canyons
  • Save the Redwoods League
  • Seed Your Future
  • Sempervirens Fund
  • SF Rec and Park
  • SheJumps
  • Shoal Creek Conservancy
  • Sierra Avalanche Center
  • Sierra Club
  • Sierra Club Outdoors
  • Sierra Club Outdoors – Military
  • Sierra Foothill Conservancy
  • Singletrack Advocates
  • Sonoma County Regional Parks Foundation
  • SORBA – Upstate SC
  • SORBA Jax
  • SOS Outreach
  • Southeastern Trust for Parks and Land
  • St. Croix River Association
  • Surfrider Foundation
  • Sweetbriar Outdoors
  • Tahoe Rim Trail Association
  • Tapteal Greenway
  • Tarheel Trailblazers
  • Tennessee Scenic Rivers Association
  • Texas Conservation Corps – American Youth Works
  • Texas State Park Ambassadors
  • The Corps Network
  • The Friends of Cheasty Greenspace at Mt.View (FCGMV)
  • The Land Trust of the Treasure Valley
  • The Mazamas
  • The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at Texas State University
  • The Mountaineers
  • The Ocean Foundation, Washington, D.C.
  • The Park People
  • The Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve
  • The Trustees
  • The Western Slope Conservation Center
  • The Wilderness Society
  • Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
  • Timucuan Trail Parks Foundation
  • Trails 50
  • Trails and Open Space Coalition
  • Transforming Youth Outdoors
  • Treasure Valley Family YMCA
  • Treepeople Inc.
  • Truckee Donner Land Trust
  • Trust for Public Land
  • Trust for the George Washington Parkway
  • Ventana Wilderness Alliance A Non Profit California Corporation
  • Venture Out Project
  • Vive Northwest
  • Voyageurs National Park Association
  • Washington Area Bicycle Association
  • Washington State Trails Coalition
  • Washington Trails Association
  • Washington’s National Park Fund
  • Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition
  • Weber Pathways
  • Weir Farm National Historic Site
  • Western Rivers Conservancy
  • Whatcom Land Trust
  • Wild Olympics
  • Wild Salmon Center
  • Wilderness Awareness
  • Wildlands Restoration Volunteers
  • Willamette Riverkeeper
  • Winter Wildlands
  • Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association Inc.
  • Yellowstone Association
  • Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
  • YMCA
  • YMCA of Greater Omaha
  • Yosemite Conservancy

Brands and Companies

  • Adventure Advertising
  • Arc’teryx
  • Big Agnes
  • Burton
  • Cooperative Council of North Carolina
  • Google
  • Honey Stinger
  • KEEN
  • KÜHL
  • Meetup
  • Outdoor Research
  • prAna
  • Royal Gorge Zipline Tours
  • Subaru of America
  • Sustainable Brand
  • Terrapin Beer Compan
  • Upworthy
  • YETI

About REI
REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of more than 6 million active members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 148 stores in 36 states. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.comREI.com/REI-Garage or the free REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. You can take the trip of a lifetime with REI Adventures, a global leader in active adventure travel that runs 170 custom-designed itineraries on every continent. REI’s Outdoor School is run by professionally-trained, expert-instructors who teach beginner- to advanced-level courses about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to–and steward–the outdoor places that inspire us.

Contact:
REI Public Affairs
(253) 395-5958
prrequests@rei.com

Source: REI

#OptOutside: REI to close its doors on Black Friday to encourage people embrace the outdoors and create new holiday tradition

  • Outdoor co-op will shut all 149 of its doors on Black Friday, process no online sales and pay all 12,287 employees to take the day off and head outside instead
  • This year, more than 275 national and local organizations form movement to invite millions of people to participate
  • New outdoor activity finder launched at REI.com/opt-outside to help people reconnect with family and friends this holiday season and declare support

SEATTLE, 2016-Oct-25 — /EPR Retail News/ — REI, the $2.4 billion outdoor co-op, has announced that it will close its doors once more this Black Friday. Stepping up its effort to create a cultural counterweight to Black Friday, REI says that it is giving #OptOutside to the outdoor community to lift up and celebrate the people who dedicate their lives to the outdoors. A vast network of organizations has united already to mobilize millions more to embrace the outdoors and create a new holiday tradition for all Americans.

“This year, REI will shut down on both Thanksgiving and Black Friday because fundamentally we believe that being outside makes us our best selves – healthier and happier, physically and mentally. But as a nation we’re still spending over 90 percent of our lives indoors and it’s a trend we need to tackle,” said REI CEO Jerry Stritzke. “I love that there is a community of people in this country who dedicate their lives to that mission, so together, we are asking America “Will you go out with us?”

REI is putting power in the hands of more than 6 million co-op members and lovers of the outdoors, asking every individual to invite someone else to choose the outdoors over fighting it out in the aisles. REI.com/opt-outside will serve as the hub to get involved, declare support, invite others to join the movement or simply find a place to play outdoors. Visitors can upload photos, share through social media, discover thousands of trails and parks nearby or get connected with non-profits that steward the outdoors.

REI gives 70 percent of its profits back to the outdoor community annually and has united more than 275 non-profit, government and corporate partners to inspire millions of people to hit the trails, parks and waterways on November 25. Details on the partners and stories of their contributions can be read on the Co-op Journal at http://blog.rei.com/news/optoutside-will-you-go-out-with-us/.

Stritzke continued, “The moment we announced our decision last year, people who build their lives around the outdoors really embraced the idea of reclaiming Black Friday. It took on a life of its own and became about much more than REI. #OptOutside should be a platform for the nonprofits and public servants who are on the front lines of the outdoor community. They’re the ones who make the outdoors accessible for everyone. That’s why, from today onward, we’re going to lift them up as the official spokespeople for #OptOutside.”

During #OptOutside, experts from the outdoor community will share perspectives on topics including the power of nature to heal, the value of childhood play outdoors, the value of nurturing and conserving our public lands and the increasing need for diversity in the outdoors. Viewpoints will be published by the co-op on Co-op Journal and promoted by REI through social media in an effort to explore the idea that a life outdoors is a life well lived.

FOR MEDIA: B-Roll and photo assets are available in the REI Newsroom.

Appendix: This year, at launch, more than 275 organizations are already involved. Many more are expected to join by Black Friday.

Nonprofits and government agencies that steward the outdoors are at the heart of this effort. Organizations representing thousands of local chapters across the country have already joined #OptOutside:

  • Diversity In The Outdoors: Six nonprofits focused on increasing diversity in the outdoors will be hosting events all across the country. Our partners in this effort are 52 Hike Challenge, Black Girls Run, Camber Outdoors, Girl Trek, Natural Leaders Network and Outdoor Afro.
  • Local Nonprofit Impact: Local trails and outdoors advocacy groups, including Friends of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Buckeye Trails Association, the Mississippi Park Connection and others will lead events on Black Friday to get people into the outdoors.
  • The National Parks Service is spreading the #OptOutside message to all park employees and The National Park Foundation, with the Parks’ friends groups.
  • More Joining Every Day: Dozens of other major nonprofits have joined with their own unique expression of #OptOutside. For example, the Trust for Public Land will a host pre-Black Friday event at a local San Francisco park the week before Thanksgiving to raise awareness, which several other groups have discussed doing. And The Sierra Club will help amplify #OptOutside by leveraging its social media and digital channels, which reach its 2.4 million members and supporters engaged in 63 chapters across the country.

Companies with a genuine passion for the outdoors have joined us:

  • Subaru of America. Subaru of America will be bringing together two of its drivers’ passions, the outdoors and pets, and inviting pet lovers everywhere to #OptOutside with their four-legged friends on Black Friday. To help those dogs who need to #OptOutside the most, Subaru of America will be providing a fleet of vehicles and drivers in New York City to take shelter dogs out of their cages and into nature for the day. Subaru of America will also be offering pet parents in NYC, and their dogs, a free shuttle ride away from all the concrete and into the great outdoors. Subaru of America retailers will remain open on Black Friday to help power all your outdoor adventures.
  • Big Agnes, Burton, Keen, KÜHL, Outdoor Research, prAna and a host of leading outdoor companies will connect with their hundreds of thousands of collective followers on social media with a unique, inspirational message to get outside on Black Friday.
  • Google and REI are launching a pilot program to support nonprofits in Austin and Seattle, starting with the Washington Trails Association and the Shoal Creek Conservancy. This pilot, in both markets, has two components. The first component is a “skilled service project” that centers on Google’s Creative Skills for Innovation Lab (or CSI:Lab), which helps organizations rethink how they collaborate, instill creativity and tackle critical organizational issues. The second is a more traditional service project, which REI will organize through its Outdoor Programs and Outreach team, with support from Google employees.
  • Meetup is tapping its network of 25,000 organizers who run local outdoor groups to host outdoor activities on Black Friday.
  • Upworthy is a mission-driven media company and will help drive a national conversation about the important mental and physical health benefits of being outside. Upworthy tells stories that open doors to new ideas that make people feel surprised, happy, inspired and motivated. Stories that connect us to each other, change our minds, open our hearts and sometimes even make the world a better place.

About REI
REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of more than 6 million active members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 148 stores in 36 states. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.com, REI.com/REI-Garage or the free REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. You can take the trip of a lifetime with REI Adventures, a global leader in active adventure travel that runs 170 custom-designed itineraries on every continent. REI’s Outdoor School is run by professionally-trained, expert-instructors who teach beginner- to advanced-level courses about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to–and steward–the outdoor places that inspire us.

Contact:
REI Public Affairs
(253) 395-5958
prrequests@rei.com

Source: REI