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Channel Mastery


Jan 21, 2020

I had the opportunity to sit down with Sutton Bacon and Darren Bush, the founders of Paddlesports Retailer and now, the Big Gear Show. This episode is co-produced by Verde Brand Communications, the leading source of multi-channel specialty brand communications, and SNEWS, the source for outdoor active lifestyle industry news. 

This show is positioned for “Main Street, not Wall Street,” and invites hardgoods manufacturers (no apparel), from outdoor, bike and paddlesports for the first time ever. It makes sense, all of these categories of outdoor active lifestyle do share a shopper. But the Big Gear Show is disruptive and is - not surprisingly - inspiring a lot of direct conversation in the outdoor active lifestyle communities. 

In this episode, you’ll get to hear straight from the founders why they believe so much in this audacious launch, why they’ve brought together outdoor and bike, why they’ve hired on two past trade show directors in bike and outdoor to lead the charge, and their take on the opportunity for specialty hardgoods manufacturers to endear today’s connected shopper. We also get into why Sutton and Darren believe that adding another trade show to an already-clogged calendar of regional shows, the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance shows, Eurobike, and the Outdoor Retailer show makes complete sense.

The Big Gear Show is slated to launch this July in Salt Lake City and offers a chance for retailers, inventors, dreamers, big and small to connect with the north star, the shopper. 

We invite you to listen to this episode with an open mind, and also, to please share it to build the conversation online. You can weigh in at the LinkedIn pages of SNEWS and Kristin Carpenter, the host of the Channel Mastery podcast and the founder/CEO of Verde Brand Communications. 

Sutton Bacon is the former leader of the Natahala Outdoor Center, and the co-founder of Paddlesports Retailer with Darren Bush, who is the creator of the successful paddling-specific consumer event, Canoecopia, and the owner of specialty paddlesports retailer, Rutabaga.