Northwest Report

Business has been good at Bend Ski and Sport, in Bend, Oregon. Manager Shawn Sellard says shop sales have grown 35 percent this season. In the past, typical growth has been twenty percent.

To get a feel for the lines they attended the Pre-Vegas WWSRA show in Seattle. They do most of their actual ordering just before and at Vegas to utilize manufacturers’ discounts. After the show, Sellard says they’ll pick and choose, adding about one-third more of their orders. Brands that look good to the shop include Ride, Palmer, Prom, Swag, and Drake.

Up the hill from Bend, at the Mt. Bachelor Resort, Retail Buyer Terry Blackwell says employees from his store attended the Outdoor Retailer show, the Seattle previews, the local on-snow held at Bachelor, and sent three buyers to Vegas. Burton, Morrow, K2, Rossignol, and Salomon are all on the list for purchase. "The combo of having Rossignol as our rental board and also in the store makes sense," he says. "Especially since they’ve made such a commitment to retail this year. A few years ago it would have been foolish to have a ski manufacturer in the shop, but that’s completely changed now."

Blackwell says his 6,000-square-foot store is evenly divided between ski and snowboard gear. "The department managers always fight over where that line begins and ends, but each department is about the same size," he says.

In Seattle, Faction Manager Kyle Sherk says his shop attends the Seattle and Vegas shows as well. However, according to Sherk, "Most of our buying was locked up in pre-show meetings." They like to figure everything out before the shows and take care of all the last-minute formalities at Vegas. Sherk likes the Burton goods, and says Silence was looking really good.

Exit Real World in Salem, Oregon does its ordering starting in late January through the third week of March. However, Owner Missy Samiee says the bulk of ordering is done the last week of February to the first week of March.

Samiee says they attend the ASR Long Beach, Seattle, Vegas, and the Bachelor on-snow. Brands that look good to her include Morrow. "We do a lot of Morrow, and it looked strong," says Samiee. She also likes Burton, Foursquare because it’s super-clean, easy to sell, and Bonfire who she says is "back to where they were."

Buck Treasure, Manager of Snowboard Connection in Seattle, Washington, says they do most of their ordering in-store. They attend the Mount Bachelor on-snow, Seattle, and Vegas shows with the ordering happening between Seattle and Vegas.

Treasure likes Ride’s goods and felt they gave a good presentation. Mervin Manufacturing’s Gnu and Lib Tech boards are "always beautiful," says Treasure, and adds that new clothing companies have given customers different styles to choose from.