Next Generation Patagoniac: A Reader Letter

2 Min Read  /  Culture

NextgenSo much of what we do stems from the desire to improve the world for the next generation. And here at Pat. HQ we’re constantly reminded of that responsibility by the kids we see playing at our onsite daycare center. Patagonia customer Chris Stelter makes us optimistic for the future with this heart-warming contribution. Chris works for Shure audio in Chicago, where he lives with his wife Wendy and son Jack.

Reading Matt O’Conner’s post from April 6, 2007 (Greenie & The Man Truck) made me think about my oldest piece of Patagonia clothing. I think it would have to be a snap Synchilla fleece (the one made from pop bottles – I’m from the Midwest so it’s "pop, not "soda"). It still hangs in my closet and is put into action whenever I have a project around the house that requires some warmth (quite often here in Chicago). It’s seen and done a lot since it was given to me in 1993 as a college graduation present. Since then, I’ve owned a great deal of the Patagonia catalog. The pieces have served me well fly-fishing, mountain biking, skiing, kayaking, steelhead fishing, and most recently, raising my son (the most rewarding of all of them!). 

I’ve always been proud to wear clothing from a company that strives for minimal impact (environmentally) as possible. With the birth of our son 18 months ago, the realization that he will inherit this planet in the condition I leave it really hits home. With a "sportsman’s" respect for the outdoors I learned from my father and the knowledge passed on along by Yvon, Melinda, and the rest of the Patagonia crew in the pages of the catalogs, books, and websites, I’m well armed to guide my son’s Love for the big spinning sphere he’s now riding on.

The attached photo is of my son and his first piece of Patagonia clothing. I can’t say it’s his first Patagonia item, that’s reserved for the Capilene blanket we brought him home from the hospital in. He still sleeps with it.

Thanks for such a cool blog (oh, and clothes!)

~Chris Stelter

[Jack, ready to face the world in his Retro Vest. Photo: Chris Stelter]

Related Stories

Dad Most Rad – The First of Your Rad Dad stories
  Ever ridden in a backpack, surfed tandem, skied on a leash, been pulled up to the belay, sat on the handle bars or just had a downright radical experience with the helping hand of your Rad Dad? In celebration of Father's Day, we put that question to you a little over a week ago.   The…
  Ever ridden in a backpack, surfed tandem, skied on a leash, been pulled up to the belay, sat on the handle bars or just had a downright radical experience with the helping hand of your Rad Dad? In celebration of Father's Day, we put that question to you a little over a week ago.   The…
3 min Read
Backyard Adventures: Parenting Outdoors Audio Slideshow
A little over a year ago, we invited readers to submit stories of their own Backyard Adventures and announced a deadline of January 9th, 2009. Here we are in 2010, and still (happily) receiving submissions. The most recent is this beautiful audio slideshow from father and Bend, Oregon resident, Jason Albert, entitled Backyard World. The…
A little over a year ago, we invited readers to submit stories of their own Backyard Adventures and announced a deadline of January 9th, 2009. Here we are in 2010, and still (happily) receiving submissions. The most recent is this beautiful audio slideshow from father and Bend, Oregon resident, Jason Albert, entitled Backyard World. The…
3 min Read
How Did Fatherhood Change Your Outdoor Lifestyle?
Happy Father’s Day to all the Patagoniac dads out there. Hope you had a good one. I’m sure some of you can relate to this sweet story from Ray Aberle. Read "Smaller Summits" How did fatherhood change your outdoor lifestyle? We’d love to read your story in the comments section if you have the time…
Happy Father’s Day to all the Patagoniac dads out there. Hope you had a good one. I’m sure some of you can relate to this sweet story from Ray Aberle. Read "Smaller Summits" How did fatherhood change your outdoor lifestyle? We’d love to read your story in the comments section if you have the time…
1 min Read
“Life of Pie”: Jen Zeuner and Anne Keller Q&A
In a fossil-rich corner of western Colorado, set against lush agricultural fields, the big-box stores of Grand Junction and the sandstone formations of the Colorado National Monument, you’ll find Fruita. These days, the town is an international mountain-biking destination known for its ribbony, high-desert trails, technical routes overlooking the Colorado River and funky downtown where…
In a fossil-rich corner of western Colorado, set against lush agricultural fields, the big-box stores of Grand Junction and the sandstone formations of the Colorado National Monument, you’ll find Fruita. These days, the town is an international mountain-biking destination known for its ribbony, high-desert trails, technical routes overlooking the Colorado River and funky downtown where…
Katie Klingsporn
7 min Read
What a Road Trip Breakdown Has to Do with Mars
Rule #1 of a road trip: Vehicle may break down. Rule #2 of a road trip: You may break down along with it. Near the Ruby Mountains in Nevada, Gordon and Meredith Wiltsie were struggling with wrenches and wire after the muffler came loose on their old International Travelall. As their 4-year-old son, Nick, whacked at…
Rule #1 of a road trip: Vehicle may break down. Rule #2 of a road trip: You may break down along with it. Near the Ruby Mountains in Nevada, Gordon and Meredith Wiltsie were struggling with wrenches and wire after the muffler came loose on their old International Travelall. As their 4-year-old son, Nick, whacked at…
Bonnie Tsui
2 min Read
Life of Pie: How Hot Tomato Pizza Unites a Mountain Biking Paradise
Friday night at the Hot Tomato is not for those in a hurry. Hungry customers grip pints of beer and compare notes on the day’s rides in lines that spill into the parking lot. Music pumps and the staff whirls behind the counter, tossing floury dough, yelling requests to the kitchen, giving each other shit.…
Friday night at the Hot Tomato is not for those in a hurry. Hungry customers grip pints of beer and compare notes on the day’s rides in lines that spill into the parking lot. Music pumps and the staff whirls behind the counter, tossing floury dough, yelling requests to the kitchen, giving each other shit.…
Diane French
4 min Read
The Reward Of Risk: Building Confidence In Kids
Patagonia has offered corporate-sponsored on-site child care since 1983. The Great Pacific Child Development Center, GPCDC for short, is where infants and children spend their days crawling, running, climbing and exploring, mostly outdoors, while their parents work. We wanted to tell the story of GPCDC, so we published Family Business by Malinda Chouinard and Jennifer Ridgeway. The…
Patagonia has offered corporate-sponsored on-site child care since 1983. The Great Pacific Child Development Center, GPCDC for short, is where infants and children spend their days crawling, running, climbing and exploring, mostly outdoors, while their parents work. We wanted to tell the story of GPCDC, so we published Family Business by Malinda Chouinard and Jennifer Ridgeway. The…
Patagonia
7 min Read
A Gathering for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion with Teresa Baker
Back in November, a group of Patagonia employees and friends from around the country came together in Yosemite National Park to have some important and difficult conversations about diversity, equity and inclusion. The bottom line: We can, and should, be doing a lot more to actively engage with individuals and communities who are historically underrepresented…
Back in November, a group of Patagonia employees and friends from around the country came together in Yosemite National Park to have some important and difficult conversations about diversity, equity and inclusion. The bottom line: We can, and should, be doing a lot more to actively engage with individuals and communities who are historically underrepresented…
Patagonia
7 min Read
Popular searches