DoD Warrior Games 2019 Tampa Bay Florida
In addition to embellishing apparel in house, RTG has the capability to take our show on the road and set up shop to decorate onsite at special events. The last week of June, we deployed a special-event team to Tampa for the Department of Defense Warrior Games and built and staffed Under Armour’s hugely popular pop-up shop.
We sold apparel from Under Armour’s patriotic Freedom Line (a proceed of sales of this line is donated to the veteran’s charity Fisher House). We also offered customers the opportunity to design their own custom shirts by choosing from a menu of logo options. We printed shirts onsite and customers received them the same day.
Warrior Games: Resilience and Inspiration
For those unfamiliar with this inspirational event, the Warrior Games is an athletic competition for wounded, ill, and injured service members and veterans. The Department of Defense established the Warrior Games in 2010 to encourage recovery and rehabilitation of those struggling with health issues and expose them to adaptive sports. The Games provide motivation to stay physically active and remind participants that despite their physical and mental challenges, they are strong and capable. They are warriors!
Each year, thousands of people try out for a coveted spot to represent at the games. This year, approximately 300 skilled athletes made the cut. These individuals represented the U.S. Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Special Operations Command, as well as the U.K. Armed Forces, Australian Defence Force, and Canadian Armed Forces.
Teams included active-duty service members and veterans with upper- and lower-body and spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, visual impairment, serious illnesses, and post-traumatic stress. They went head-to-head in 11 sports including, archery, cycling, shooting, sitting volleyball, swimming, track and field, wheelchair basketball, indoor rowing, powerlifting, and time-trial cycling.
Required Team Gear and Under Armour: A Winning Team
On Day One of Mission Warrior Games, our team set up on the concourse adjacent to the Opening Ceremonies. Hosted by Jon Stewart and headlined by country music act Hunter Hayes, the opening ceremonies served as the official kickoff for Warrior Games 2019. Under Armour did not disappoint, and dispatched the Rocket – Under Armour’s two-story, wheelchair-accessible, fun, festive, and functional traveling Under Armour truck -- as our team’s sales location for the evening.
Bright and early the next day and for all days following, our team’s home base was our inviting booth set up in the Tampa Bay Convention Center – site of most competitions and all of the Warrior Games family programming. Members of the military family are a proud bunch, and rightfully so. At a competition like the Warrior Games, branch pride is on full display. The Under Armour and Required Team Gear booth was the place to be, not only because everyone wanted to purchase high-quality Under Armour gear but because Required Team Gear offered them the opportunity to design their own branch-specific gear.
Customers were able to choose from a menu of design options – large designs that could be applied to the front or back of a shirt, as well as small designs that could be applied to sleeves, upper back, chest – anywhere! Our booth was packed from sun-up to sunset with creative souls excited to produce truly one-of-a-kind apparel. In fact, our booth was packed even as we were dismantling our booth preparing to head back to Texas after a long but inspiring and rewarding week. Customers could not get enough custom Under Armour gear – which is why we plan to be back bigger and better next year for Warrior Games 2020 in San Antonio.