Gear and Beer Lovers Unite: PJH throws a product party for outdoor enthusiasts and snow-lovers

By on January 4, 2018

Jackson attracts outdoor enthusiasts who want to ski faster and climb harder. They even take their relaxation seriously. It’s also a place that inspires creativity and when that blends with innovation at the hands of people who spend most of their time outdoors, it isn’t surprising that so many outdoor gear companies have grown up in the same valley where those products are used.

The first Gear and Beer Expo is a celebration of those companies. Hosted by Planet Jackson Hole and Jackson Hole Snowboarder Magazine, the event will showcase up to 15 local and regional outdoor companies and their latest products, said Dave Alper, account executive with the Planet and event coordinator for the expo.

“It’s an opportunity for the Jackson community to see what’s being made right in their backyard,” he said.

The expo will provide the perfect apres ski opportunity Saturday, Alper said. It runs from 4 to 9 p.m. at the Center for the Arts. The $10 entrance fee includes a ticket for a beer from either Snake River Brewing or Melvin Brewing or a slice of pizza from Pinky G’s. Additional beer and food can be purchased at the event, and the Beat Byrd will provide music. People are free to come in ski clothes, Alper said.

More than a week before the event, 10 companies confirmed they would showcase their goods at the expo, and Alper hoped to add a few more before the doors open Saturday.

The event will feature brands that are smaller and more garage grown, along with companies like Stio, which has a national presence in the outdoor apparel market, Alper said.

Confirmed companies include Give’r, a company known for its gloves. Give’r also sells clothing, hats and other accessories.

You can also check out Noso Patches at the expo. Their “no sew” patches allow you to repair your favorite ripped puffy clothing, and you can pick up one at the event.

Vetspac will also be on hand to show off their vest hydration packs, which are made for running, skiing or just about any outdoor activity.

Night Caddy is working on making sunglasses for cyclists so they can see behind themselves while riding. They won’t be ready in time for Gear and Beer, so the company will be featuring a bed attachment that acts as a nightstand complete with a USB charger, perfect for dorm-style or the tight living quarters some people experience in Jackson, Alper said.

There also will be skis, snowboards and bindings from boutique companies in the area, Alper said.

People will be able to buy display products directly from the vendor, similar to an art fair, while also learning more about the companies. While there is a company from Colorado and one from Utah, most of expo participants are from Jackson.

The event is unique in Jackson and Alper hopes this won’t be the last, but instead it will become a tradition. It’s the perfect melding of gear and equipment, with the community spirit where people support each other and try to shop locally, he said.

The event is sponsored by Kate’s Real Food, Teton Signs, Give’r and the Teton Sports Club.

The expo should get people stoked to get outside — as though people in Jackson need more stoke, Alper said. But it also should illuminate some of the companies based in Jackson people might not realize are here.

“People get to check out a bunch of new cool stuff and learn about what’s happening right in their town,” Alper said. “I hope they think ‘I’m from Jackson and this is made in Jackson.’ And they feel a sense of community pride.” PJH

Gear and Beer Expo will be held from 4 to 9 p.m. on Saturday at Center for the Arts. Tickets are $10 and include a beer/food ticket.

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