One of the items many Bridge Day attendees make sure they have in their clutches before they leave for home for the day is the annual Bridge Day T-shirt.
For more than a decade, Morgantown-based SustainU Clothing has provided quality T-shirts and hoodies using sustainable materials for those attending West Virginia's largest one-day festival.
According to director Dylan Smith, this year marks the second year in which SustainU will work Bridge Day as a fully owned apparel brand under the umbrella of Coalfield Development, a 501(c)(3) family of social enterprises.
"We're pretty excited to represent Coalfield Development," Smith said. "They're doing some great things in West Virginia."
According to its website, Coalfield Development "believes in developing the potential of Appalachian places and people as they experience challenging moments of economic transition by unlocking people’s creative power to transform perceived problems into opportunities in the communities we call home."
The program empowers individuals to earn an associate's degree and work on "improving our own communities in real, tangible ways, such as rehabilitating dilapidated buildings, repurposing abandoned mine lands, and starting new businesses."
For its part, the aim of SustainU Clothing is to provide clothing that is more eco-friendly and made in the United States, according to its website. The clothing is made from more sustainable materials and printed with nontoxic inks.
The SustainU folks have tweaked their Bridge Day offerings this fall. In addition to the normal shirts which will be available for purchase at their booth adjacent to the Chamber of Commerce booth inside the Bridge Day entrance gates, the company will offer a special kiosk at which festival attendees can buy customized T-shirts.
With the special shirt, individuals will be able to choose to customize a shirt bearing an already predetermined rafting-based graphic, according to art director Tyler Fetty. It will be art-based and not utilize photos. The orders are expected to be received about a week after the order is compiled following Bridge Day, he said.
"Hopefully, we're bringing Bridge Day something that's exciting," Fetty said.
As part of Coalfield Development’s Rediscover Appalachia, SustainU Clothing designs, prints and internationally distributes apparel for sports, entertainment and social enterprise.
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