Black-Owned Outdoor Businesses You Should Know
Hello friend! A few years ago when we were marching in the streets shouting “Black Lives Matter” I noticed that everyone started to share Black-owned businesses to shop with. So obviously, I started looking into Black-owned outdoor businesses to support.
To my surprise, I couldn’t find a comprehensive list of these companies, or much information on them. So, I decided to take matters into my own hands, and I made a post to try to put attention to this finding and to put together a list to spotlight with the help of social media.
So an Excel sheet was created open to the public for anyone interested in to contribute to. And it grew!
Since my original Instagram post, there've been numerous articles and other posts highlighting more and more Black-owned outdoor businesses and it’s been so delightful to see. The outdoor industry has been historically dominated by white-owned businesses. And now, more than ever, we can help create a more equitable and representative industry by supporting and elevating the voices of Black-owned businesses. By supporting this, we are also helping build a sense of community and solidarity in the outdoors.
We're excited to share with you some of the amazing Black-owned outdoor businesses that are making waves in the industry. Here are five businesses you don't want to miss:
At Slim Pickins Outfitters, based out of Stephenville, Texas, they don’t just sell high quality outdoor gear - they want to help you get inspired for your next adventure. They know everyone has a different idea of what adventure means to them, whatever your outdoor preferences may be.
Jahmicah Dawes, the President and Creative Director of Slim Pickins Outfitters, is a father of two boys, and a very passionate outdoorsman with a vision to diversify the outdoor industry and help black people reconnect with their historical influence in outdoor spaces. Jahmicah handpicks the best functional and attractive outdoor gear for his customers, all while striving to create positive experiences and help people find their path in life.
Have you heard of allmansright? It's a company that's all about helping people freely explore the outdoors, just like the Swedish tradition of allemansrätt. They make really cool ultralight outdoor gear that's perfect for everyone from expert outdoorsmen to weekend adventurers. Their bags and sacks are designed with simplicity and precision, anticipating your every need.
The people at allmansright are passionate about the outdoors and want everyone to experience the awe and wonder that nature can bring. That's why they partner with organizations that help kids escape the city and adventure in nature for the first time. Plus, they donate 2% of their profits to groups that advocate for equal access to the outdoors for those who have felt excluded from it.
The founders of allmansright are Livio Melo and Jennifer Jacobsson. Livio is a Dominican hiker, artist, and designer who believes in the power of nature to change the world. Jennifer is a Swedish native with a background in merchandising and marketing, who grew up with allemansrätt as her playground. Together, they make a great team that's committed to helping people own their right to roam.
If you're into exploring the outdoors and want to do it in style, check out allmansright's People Planet Promise on their website. Trust me, you won't be disappointed!
ITA Leisure is a Black-owned outdoor furniture and goods brand that's here to make the outdoors more accessible and enjoyable for everyone.
As a Black woman, founder Jade Akintola often felt uncomfortable and disconnected when trying to enjoy leisure time outside. So, she decided to create ITA Leisure to address this cultural disconnect and provide premium outdoor products that align with and call in the Black community.
With ITA Leisure, you can now enjoy the great outdoors with comfort, confidence, and ease! Their products are designed to foster a sense of community and bring people closer to nature. And, being the first-ever Black-owned outdoor furniture and goods brand, ITA Leisure is all about making the outdoors a welcoming space for everyone.
When Susan, a passionate running coach for the non-profit Back on My Feet was out for a run on a chilly day, she realized that she couldn't find mittens or gloves that kept her fingers and thumbs warm while running in the cold. So, she put her thinking cap on and created something amazing: WhitePaws RunMitts!
These patented mittens are a game-changer, with thumbless mittens and inside pockets for hand warmers, you can flip them open when you need to cool off. And unlike traditional mittens and gloves, RunMitts can also be worn pushed down to your wrists. They keep your fingers and thumbs together to generate more warmth, making sure you stay comfortable during your outdoor workouts.
Now, you too can keep warm during your cold weather runs with WhitePaws RunMitts. So, go ahead, run in the cold with confidence!
A little fun fact: Susan and I met at 2022 Title Nine Pitchfest together. She was one of the winners that season! (clap clap clap)
Black Girls Do Bike is a non-profit organization all about supporting and growing a community of women of color who are passionate about cycling. They believe that everyone should have access to the joy of cycling, especially women and girls of color.
Their goal is to provide a welcoming and supportive space where lady cyclists can come together, share advice, organize rides, and promote skill-sharing. They want to make cycling more accessible and break down the barriers that might be holding new riders back from joining the larger cycling community. They believe that cycling is a tool for function, fitness, freedom, and fun!
They're also all about spreading positive images of women and their bikes to show that black girls do bike, and they're passionate about promoting bike advocacy, education, volunteerism, and safety in all communities. As Albert Einstein once said, "Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving." So why not move with this amazing community of women of color who share your passion for cycling?
Here’s a list of more Black-owned businesses we’ve found over time, that you should definitely check out!
We hope you join us in creating a more diverse, sustainable, and inclusive outdoor industry that benefits everyone. Don’t forget to check out our extended BIPOC list here!