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Patagonia, others threaten to boycott Outdoor Retailer show

Outdoor Retailer Snow Show
Posted at 3:24 PM, Feb 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-14 17:43:50-05

DENVER (AP) — An environmental conservation group and two dozen outdoor recreation companies, including Patagonia, REI and The North Face, say they will boycott the Outdoor Retailer trade show if it's moved from Denver back to Salt Lake City.

The group called The Conservation Alliance is accusing Utah's leaders of trying to chip away at protections for national monuments and public lands.

The biannual show was moved to Denver after Utah lawmakers asked President Donald Trump in February 2017 to repeal the newly designated Bears Ears National Monument.

This year's Snow Show was notably smaller, hosting 350 companies unlike other years where it hosted more than 1,000. This year there are also some notable no-shows. Companies like Patagonia, North Face and Gore-Tex backed out of the production due to corporate COVID-19 policies and the rise of the omicron variant.

Outdoor Retailer's owner, Emerald X, has surveyed attendees and is considering moving the show after its contact with Denver expires this year.

Colorado Governor Jared Polis and Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper have expressed their support for keeping the trade show in Denver. The three issued a joint statement Monday:

“Colorado’s outdoor recreation industry is crucial to our economy and our way of life. Many of the industry’s major brands call Colorado home, and rightfully so -- we take pride in caring for our public lands and supporting our tribes while taking bold climate action and remaining business friendly. Today’s announcement from the outdoor recreation industry and its top leaders underscores that the Outdoor Retailer Show belongs in Colorado. We stand with the outdoor recreation community to support an inclusive and meaningful outdoor recreation gathering that will always have a home in the Centennial State.”