October 15 was an idyllic autumn evening in the Northeast, cool and clear at the intersection of Bowery and Bleecker. As the sun set, amps and guitars and drum kits and crates of audio gear rolled through the front doors of the old CBGB gallery, awakening the musical spirits still lingering in the iconic venue.
Throwing shindigs to launch a new Patagonia store in New York City has almost become a ritual. Hell, I’ve been to three in the last two years – one for each Tin Shed location in fall 2011 and just across town at the Meatpacking district last February. The bash on Bowery, however, stood to be the wildest so far.
The store was slated to open in time for the 2012 holiday season, but the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy combined with renovation complications pushed it back by nearly a year. “Because this store was so delayed, we wanted to skip product launches and film premieres and just have a party – an opportunity to celebrate the store and just hang out with everyone from the surf community that we met and worked with over the year it took to get the shop open,” NY district manager Joy Lewis told me. Much of the staff consists of longtime Patagonia employees who served as the faces of the company during that time, surfing when waves came and volunteering in the hurricane recovery after waves went. So when the doors unlocked on September 24th of this year, we were ready. Store intrigue grew over those months. When the party went down two weeks later, we realized just how much.
Landing on the details was easy, says Joy and store manager DL Tashjian, who tapped their networks to put things together. Food and drink came from
Jeff DiNunzio is the floor lead and shipper at Patagonia Bowery. He's reported for the New York Times, Conde Nast Traveler, Esquire, GQ, Vogue, Eastern Surf Magazine, National Geographic, Koduroy.tv and ESPN.com Action Sports. Jeff carries a thick affection for ice hockey, baseball, and surfing, and hopes to eventually transition to sports management.
Jeff Johnson resides in Santa Barbara, California where he works full-time for Patagonia Inc. as a staff photographer, writer, and assists with product development.
Patagonia Bowery is located at 313 Bowery in New York City.