Alpine Shop Wins 2012 National Retailer of the Year Award

Alpine Shop Wins 2012 Retailer of the Year Award for Growth in Outdoor Sports

In a presentation in Salt Lake City, Utah, Alpine Shop – a St. Louis-based independent outdoor recreation retailer – received the 2012 SNEWS/Backpacker Magazine National Retailer of the Year Award for Growth of Outdoor Sports. This award goes to the business that performed the best job in the nation at introducing people to the world of outdoor sports during the 2011 calendar year.

“I didn’t get into this business to get rich. And let me tell you, I didn’t,” joked Alpine Shop owner Russell Hollenbeck upon receiving the award. “Getting people outdoors is why we do this. It’s behind everything we do.”

Father and Son at Alpine Shop You Can Paddle Day
Hundreds of outdoor lovers enjoy Alpine Shop's You Can Paddle Day each year.

During the 2011 calendar year, Alpine Shop, long known for its emphasis on empowering customers to get outdoors, enrolled nearly 4000 registrations for 275 educational, experiential or entertainment programs designed to teach or showcase 13 different outdoor disciplines including paddling, cycling, wilderness first aid and backpacking to name just a few.

Alpine Shop’s vision as a company is to see “Generations Transformed Through Discovery Outdoors.” Those five words have driven the retailer to truly dedicate itself over the past 37 years to the “Growth of Outdoor Sports” in St. Louis and the Midwest because of the physical, emotional and spiritual changes that the outdoors can bring to every individual.

“We believe that experiencing the outdoors changes people for the better,” said Lisa Hollenbeck, co-owner of Alpine Shop. “It brings people a better understanding of themselves and what they can accomplish. It’s more than that, though. Look at the races this past year. The outdoors also give everyone a chance to have a lot of fun. That’s why this Retailer of the Year award means so much to us.”

Alpine Shop's Short Track Dirt Crit Races
More than 1200 registrations were accepted for the 2011 Off-Road Racing League, including Alpine Shop's Short Track Dirt Crit Series.

The “races” refers to Alpine Shop’s most noticeable effort of the past year in the continued development of the Off-Road Racing League. Consisting of a total of five mountain bike races and four trail runs held at Castlewood State Park in St. Louis, the League brought in a total of nearly 1200 registrations – including over 200 newcomers and kids.

A video from the racing series is included at the bottom of this page.

About Alpine Shop

Alpine Shop began life in 1973 as a small climbing shop. Today, through its three locations in Kirkwood, Chesterfield and Columbia, Mo., it serves almost every type of outdoor enthusiast—be they backpackers, campers, cyclists, hikers, paddlers, skiers, snowboarders or climbers—with a friendly and knowledgeable staff, cutting edge products and a wide variety of how-to clinics for all activity levels. For a complete list of programs, please visit

About the SNEWS/Backpacker Magazine Retailer of the Year Awards

On Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012, during an awards celebration at the Red Door in Salt Lake City, Utah, SNEWS®, Backpacker Magazine and program sponsor Horny Toad honored six outdoor retailers as recipients of the 2012 Retailer of the Year Award, a recognition given annually to outdoor retailers who embody the spirit of entrepreneurship and who serve as visionaries for the outdoor market and leaders of the communities they serve. SNEWS President Michael Hodgson, Backpacker Editor in Chief Jonathan Dorn, and Horny Toad CEO Gordon Seabury will formally award one finalists named the title of “Retailer of the Year” and five other retailers are honored as best-in-class in the following categories: Online Retailer, Community, Growth of Outdoor Sports, Sustainable Business and Youth Involvement.