Tuesday night we navigated through the back highways of South Carolina to Anderson, SC for our meeting the next day with Grady's Great Outdoors. For over 50 years, Grady's has been the premier source of outdoor gear in the Anderson area. Today, they have fishing, hunting, paddling, outdoor apparel, shoes, and more. Sounds like a great home for NuCanoe boats!
Owner John Phillips was certainly impressed by the Frontier. He already liked the versatility of the NuCanoe 10 & 12, so the Frontier's added features and space really appealed to him. The timing is great too, as they are planning to have more room for boats and outdoor equipment in the near future. And while we'd love to have NuCanoe boats fill some of that space, certainly the anglers & hunters in the region won't leave them on the store racks for long!
From there we made our way to Sunrift Adventures in Travelers Rest, SC. Sunrift has a great selection of hiking gear, boats, clothes, camping gear, and more. They started carrying NuCanoe boats at the start of this year as they saw the growth and opportunity in kayak fishing. When they had NuCanoe boats rigged up and ready to fish on the showroom floor, it got lots of attention.
Upon first glance at the Frontier, Josh, the paddlesports manager, was loving it! The wider deck, slide track for the seats, and built in storage were all high in his NuCanoe wish list. He is anxious to get Frontiers in ahead of their demo day in the spring...and let their customers put it to the test.
Wednesday night we stayed in Greenville, SC and ventured downtown for some dinner. It's a great city with a nice downtown area. We settled on the Carolina Ale House for eats and drinks. The food was great...the only downside being about half the draft beers were out, thanks to the Greenville Fall Festival the prior weekend.
Thursday morning we were on the road to Carolina Fresh Farms in Rock Hill, SC. While the core of the business is in sod and landscape supply, by listening to their customers, their Rock Hill store has grown into a leading supplier of hunting feed, outdoor gear, and sunglasses. Seeking to round out their outdoor equipment offering and take advantage of the pond behind their store, Mills Grant began looking for a line of boats. After looking at many options, he remembered NuCanoe, which he saw at a show a few years ago. Fortunately, he got in touch ahead of the SC leg of our tour, so we were able to visit them.
We met with Mills, Byron, & Chris, and they are all full of great ideas for building the outdoor gear business at CFF. And best of all, they are excited about using the gear they carry for themselves. And that includes NuCanoe boats...particularly the Frontier. After taking it for a test ride in the pond, they were sold. And thinking forward to the spring when customers could stop by for a demo anytime. We are excited to have CFF on the NuCanoe team in 2012!