Colo. clothing companies to dress GOP delegates
Greeley GREELEY, Colo. (AP) — The Colorado delegation will have a bit of northern Colorado flair at the upcoming Republican National Convention.
Weld County Commissioner Sean Conway, who was elected chairman of the delegation in April, enlisted several local businesses to take part in the delegation's clothing for their week in Tampa, Fla. Conway said many times delegations go through large online companies to order their shirts for conventions, but he said it was important to him that the products were locally done.
"I wanted to make sure that our local small businesses designed and produced all of the items the entire Colorado delegation will be wearing at the Republican National Convention," Conway said. "Small business is the backbone of our economy, and we wanted to make a statement by having our items produced locally by small businesses."
Karen Pelzer of William Moore Jewelry in downtown Greeley designed the delegation button and logo for the T-shirts. She said she wanted to combine Colorado and the host state Florida into one design. Her final product is the Colorado flag, in a mountain shape, on a beach with palm trees behind it.
Pelzer will also be sporting the logo as a first-time delegate.
"I'm excited," Pelzer said. "I think it turned out pretty well. I wasn't nervous to make it. It was a fun thing making a commemorative piece."
Pelzer said she has heard some delegates like to trade buttons to try to collect one from each state.
Schaefer Enterprises in Evans produced the buttons, Huston Graphics in Windsor embroidered the shirts, Greeley Hat Works made the cowboy hats and Nu-Way Cleaners in Greeley helped clean, press and fold the shirts to get them ready to ship.
"I am proud to say more than $10,000 will be spent by the delegation on the items produced throughout Weld County for the upcoming Republican National Convention," Conway said.
Trent Johnson of Greeley Hat Works has had his work worn by prominent Republicans before, including President George W. Bush. Johnson said when he and Conway were trying to figure out what the style the hats should be they knew they wanted a more traditional look.
"I think it is awesome," Johnson said. "It is going to be a great convention, and I think they are really going to stand out. It isn't going to look like a square dance team. It is going to look like they are united. They are going to be matching in a stylish and Western traditional way. With Colorado being a swing state, it is going to help to be united."
In Windsor, Huston Graphics has been busy recently making T-shirts to raise money for the High Park fire victims.
"Sean saw some of the stuff we had done early this summer and I think he heard of us through that," owner Luke Burton said. "We like helping out whoever from Colorado. It will be really cool seeing our shirts on national television."