Thursday, 29 August 2019 14:54

Mountainman

Joseph Vidarte, Manager of Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company on Broadway, said that John Nemjo started the company 25 years ago in Inlet, New York. Nemjo came to Saratoga 11 years ago and started the current Broadway location, albeit without the later expansions.

Vidarte said that the company started as mostly a retail location for the brand Life is Good, but over time it expanded to be a general outdoors store, including various brands and items ranging from clothing to utensils to equipment like paddles and chairs.

“We specialize in everything from paddle sports to climbing to backpacking, hiking, snowshoeing and just outdoor apparel and life stuff,” Vidarte said.

Additionally, the store has gone through two major expansions during its lifetime on Broadway. The first was gaining the back area, which gave enough room to add the likes of the store’s library and sale room, along with more floor space for goods. The second added an entire second entrance to the store, with the floor space being used for a shoe section.

“The first expansion happened in 2013, and the last expansion was finished just a year and a half ago,” Vidarte said. “So we’ve grown about 6,000 square feet in seven years.”

The store also has a sister location, Saratoga Springs Paddle Sports, which, as the name would suggest, focuses much more heavily on paddle sports, while the main location caters to general outdoors activities. Vidarte said that it is located at Fish Creek Marina, right beside Harvest and Hearth and the Kayak Shack.

Currently, the store is in the middle of race season, which Vidarte said was their second busiest time of year, after the holidays, lasting from approximately November until Christmas.

“As far as track goes, our sales are up from last year,” he said. “I would say the overall business, the overall economy is up from last year, with track season now that it’s two weeks longer.”

He continued, “but it’s not just track that brings in people to Saratoga. There’s a lot of events going on, whether it’s at Skidmore, or it’s at Saratoga State Park or SPAC for music, the ballet, the orchestra and just Broadway in general, Broadway for the shopping and restaurants, whether it’s on Broadway or a little off Broadway, draws a whole crowd up to Saratoga.”

He concluded, “there’s not many places like Saratoga Springs in the country, especially that are this close to a large city and that provide different opportunities for everyone.”

For the near future, he said that they would be starting up their Mountainman Adventure film series. He said “it’s a film series that we show in store once a month for three months, so it’s February, March and April.”

For each of the films, he said that they invite a non-profit company, a local brewery and representatives for the brand that it featured in the film. Each film showcases an aspect of the industry, and the night’s proceeds to go the non-profit. The brewery is for fun, so that people can drink if they want, and to raise awareness about local businesses.

Vidarte said that the first film they ever made was about skiing, and aired with an old projector and screen they had bought from a Golf Simulator, with a store employee who happened to also be a disc jockey on the technical controls.

Vidarte said “the problem was that it was all white background, and the projector that we were using was so old that it wasn’t showing well for about 80 people that attended that night.”

Now, the events have ramped up the quality, with the company High Peak Sound handling the audio and visuals, among other improvements.

Along with the movies airing at the start of next year, Vidarte said that the store has various large sale days coming up, such as Rendezvous Day from Sept. 27 to Sept. 29 for the Paddle Sports location, Skidmore Parents’ Day in October, Black Friday and the Victorian Street Walk.

For more information, contact Mountainman Outdoor Supply Company, at 518-584- 3500, or visit its website at www. mountainmanoutdoors.com.

 

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