FOR 23 YEARS, American Forests and Eddie Bauer have nurtured a partnership, starting with the seedling “give a dollar, plant a tree” campaign, all the way to the now-flourishing #WhyIHike campaign, where thousands from around the globe are sharing their outdoor experiences.
Eddie Bauer created #WhyIHike to unite the company, conservation nonprofits and the outdoor enthusiasts that are the lifeblood of both organizations.
“Together, we are able to bring greater awareness to causes we believe in, open the conversation with customers, and connect the idea of conservation to the consumer’s enjoyment of forests and outdoor spaces,” says Eddie Bauer President Damien Huang.
#WhyIHike was a photography competition on Instagram and Twitter in which outdoor enthusiasts around the globe are invited to post a picture from the wild spaces they adventure in and share their inspiration. The initiative launched in April 2018 and ran through the end of September 2018.
“Whether it’s on a week long backpacking trip or hiking in their own backyard,” Huang says, “some hike to clear their minds or to challenge themselves. Others hike to honor a loved one or to bond with family and friends.”
Competition entrants had a chance to win a once-in-a-lifetime hiking adventure to either Kauai, Hawaii, Whistler, British Columbia or Yosemite National Park, in addition to other smaller prize offerings. Additionally, Eddie Bauer created a special American Forests t-shirt for the campaign, with 10 percent of the proceeds going directly to American Forests.
“Conservation and preservation has been in our DNA since our founder, Eddie Bauer, was alive,” Huang says. “Eddie Bauer, the man himself, spent his entire life encouraging people to get outside, and reminding them to assume personal responsibility for preserving the beauty of nature.”
That brand DNA of environmental conservation and stewardship is alive and well today, with Eddie Bauer helping American Forests plant more than 7 million trees during our 23-year partnership, with many millions more to take root as this partnership further flourishes.