Wrangler Western Wear launched the National Patriot program during the final day of the National Finals Rodeo in December, and after the National Patriot apparel is available for public sale, local rodeo committees will work with Wrangler to provide money for local military organizations.
The Wrangler National Patriot program will create a new line of Wrangler men’s and women’s dress shirts with the Wrangler National Patriot logo, and a portion of the proceeds will be given to charities that provide support to military veterans. Much of the money will stay in the local communities of affiliated rodeos.
“The Western industry is a very strong supporter of their sacrifices for us,” Wrangler director of special events Jeff Chadwick said of the military. “It’s just a little tiny payback for what they’ve done for our country all these years.”
Chadwick’s predecessor as Wrangler’s director of special events was Karl Stressman, who introduced the Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign to fight breast cancer.
“That was really Karl’s innovation,” Chadwick said. “Karl pretty much took that and ran with it in the Western industry.”
The Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign has raised more than $7.5 million for cancer research and for educational campaigns to encourage testing. Although some of that money has gone to the national Breast Cancer Research Foundation, much of the funding has been distributed to local breast cancer charities.
The National Patriot campaign will not replace Tough Enough to Wear Pink. “It’s not one or the other. They’re going to do both,” Chadwick said.
The initial National Patriot line will consist of eight men’s shirts and four women’s shirts. The shirts will be a solid red, white, or blue, and the National Patriot logo on that shirt will have the other two colors.
The apparel is expected to expand to caps, bandannas, and other items. “Anything we can put the Wrangler National Patriot logo on, we will be donating proceeds,” Chadwick said. The shirts are expected to be available to the public in April 2010.
The local rodeo committees will designate the servicemen or veterans’ organization to which the proceeds from local rodeos will be sent. “It really gives them an option,” Chadwick said. “The money’s all going to supporting the soldiers across the country.”
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