Updated Sunday, June 10 with Store Hours
For as long as Don Demers can remember, he’s felt a special connection to Schroon Lake and the Adirondacks.
And over the last few years he’s had a desire to combine that love of the rugged beauty of the North Country with a business. It would also serve to promote the area as a destination for hikers and adventurers who have heard the call of our mountains and peaks,
“The idea about starting a business got serious and my friends said if you don’t do it now, you will never do it,” Don told Schroon Laker.
And so the brand Bark Eater Outfitters was born. The headquarters is a storefront on Schroon’s Main Street. Right now Bark Eater Outfitters is a clothing line, featuring T-Shirts, relaxing wear, baseball caps and hoodies. The line includes apparel for adults and kids. Don is also carrying several other brands, featuring high tech flip flops, board shorts and long sleeved shirts.
Other brands Don carries are Greenlines board shorts, Knockaround sunglasses, Cobian Flipflops, Hudson Sutler, Flag & Anthem casual wear, FlipRocks utility sandals, Dak Bars.
The store is open weekends until June 19 when it’s 6 days a week (Closed Monday) 9am to 5pm,
One of his most popular designs is a cross section of a map featuring the word Hike, inside an outline of the Blue Line of The Adirondack Park. Don is wearing it in the picture above.
Don realized there was a demand for his clothing when he had a store at the Gore Mountain Fall Festival last tear.
“It was like ‘Whoa’, people like this."
Don comes up with the concepts and works with talented designers who captured his vision.
One of the designers is Michele Frusciano, at Green Girl Canvas. She came up with an apparel line that celebrates New York State's constitutional designation of the Adirondacks as "Forever Wild” for a kids clothing line.
“This captures the infinite outdoor spirit of our youngest generation."
Don wants to grow the line and eventually move production to this area.
“I’m not talking abut a huge factory. I’d keep it small. There is a large pool of talented people here and I’d love to utilize them.”
Part of Don’s plan is a vision he has to help grow tourism, using the store as a base. “I want to share my passion of the mountains and hiking. That’s something I’ve always done. I’ve had friends up here over the years who had never hiked. They got the bug. Now they have hiked more than I have”. Don has hiked 7 of the 46 Peaks.
“There are several terrific trails close by. Gull Pond is my go to when I have visitors with kids. They love it and their reaction is: ‘Wow — this is right here?’. There are many trails like that around here and I’d like to be able to eventually connect local guides with folks wanting to explore the area using the store as a starting point.
Don, originally from New Jersey, is relocating to his second home in Schroon Lake to run the business. The store on Main Street is located directly opposite from Stewarts. It’s in a space that was originally an A&P grocery store. Recently it was a yarn store. The store will continue at add inventory throughout the season.
You can see more of the line, here.