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Tiffany Montgomery
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Green Room idea for stores gains steam as ASEC rolls out new features

By Tiffany Montgomery
May 05, 2009 6:30 AM

Many of you have heard Frank Scura, executive director of the Action Sports Environmental Coalition, speak at industry events about his dream of creating "Green Rooms" in surf and skate shops.

The idea behind the Green Room is to group ecologically-friendly footwear, apparel and other products together in clearly marked areas of stores. In addition to helping the planet, the goal is to stimulate sales and give independent board retailers a point of difference as big box stores become more involved in selling action sports-inspired clothing.

Frank at BRA SummitFrank Scura and pro skateboader
Bob Burnquist at the
Board Retailers Summit last month.

Frank is incredibly passionate and could have a great career as a motivation speaker. Now it seems the groundwork he has laid is finally paying off, with the launch of the first Green Room at the Hobie store in Laguna Beach over Memorial Day weekend. (Read more about Hobie's Green Room initiatives here.) Eleven other stores have committed to the program, Frank said.

Frank also now has some high-powered volunteers taking the initiative to the next level.

  • Kiwi Gullixon, Quiksilver's former director of in-store design and graphics, is designing the Green Room's point of purchase displays;
  • Joe McElroy of Rent Control, formerly the vice president of global branding/creative director at Hurley International, is helping with the Green Room website and marketing initiatives; and
  • Jeff Baillargeon of Verdigris Consulting, formerly the director of merchandising at Quiksilver for young men's tops, will be helping Green Room retailers join together to more economically buy organic materials for their private label eco-friendly goods.

Joe told me he got involved because he believes in ASEC's mission and believes in the Green Room idea.

"I completely believe in the Green Room and its longevity because it will stimulate new business in these challenging economic times while also doing great things for the planet," Joe said. "There is a green movement going on globally and the Green Room is just another way for the action sport industry to take part in preserving our planet."

Professional skateboarder Bob Burnquist also supports the Green Room concept and said at the summit he he would be excited to make in-store appearances at stores with Green Rooms.

Frank plans to make a big Green Room push for back-to-school. The point of purchase displays will be ready by early July for the back to school season along with a revamped website that includes eco catalogs, retailer locators, athlete blogs and more

The ASEC has also partnered with Fuel TV's American Misfits, Frank said. The show is going on a 23-city tour in August and will hit Green Rooms in different towns and feature them as the spot to get a pulse on what is happening in that city, Frank said.

"We are going to partner with teams to do demos at the shops and through good old-fashioned eco tree hugging parties," he said.

The fee to participate in the Green Room initiative is $400 annually per store for members of the Board Retailers Association and $500 for non-members.

The fee includes:

  • Sourcing for private label, endemic and non-endemic natural products, including access to eight graphics by well-known artists where store names can be dropped in
  • Integration into a national marketing and public relations campaign.
  • Marketing tools, windows and point of purchases displays
  • Education materials including a "Shop greening and sourcing guide."
  • Development strategies and collective brand retailer partnerships
  • Listing in the ASEC's retailer web locator and association with brands eco catalog

To find out more about the Green Room or to signup, email Kiwi Gullixson or, contact ASEC headquarters at 707-829-2682. Currently, there is not a lot of information about the program on the ASEC web site because it is being rebuilt.


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