If we were to start this one off like most other reflection-on-2016 posts, we would trip all over ourselves with lamentations and sh*t talking. And trust us, there has been no lack of that during happy hour.
But the New Year is just that: spankin’ new and we’d rather use up these fresh minutes and seconds with a year in review—turns out, 2016 brought a torrent of good to our shop.
As far as fresh digs go, 2016 marked a new start for Full Sail Brewing Co., and for Columbia River Knife & Tool. And with that, new campaigns and initiatives. If you haven’t had a chance to get a peek at our Session Summer campaign that ran for a whopping 100 days this summer, get a taste on our blog recap.
In other important news, we practiced some self love this year with a brand new Blue Collar website complete with a freshened-up portfolio of work, a horde of new blogs, and, best of all, an ecommerce store. 2016: the year of Worker Grade! Our Ignition Hoodies went flying off the shelves during the holiday season. There are still several sizes left—grab one before they’re gone!
2016 was also the year we gave back in a big way. On the topic of Worker Grade, we commissioned one of our best artist buds, Kevin Cornell, to create art for our exclusive Cuddle Puddle t-shirts. 100% of the proceeds were donated to the Oregon Humane Society. Because everyone (even the furry ones) deserve a warm bed when the snow starts to fall.
Our other charity initiative for 2016 was saving the Tilly Jane A-Frame from its much-too-early demise. To help the cause, we created a fresh brand identity, Facebook and Instagram pages, and we threw two successful fundraising events. We’re carrying that momentum with us into 2017, so keep a sharp eye out!
Pass The Mic
Blue Collar on the whole had an excellent year, and turns out, so did the mechanics!
What made 2016 great?
- First full year in Hood River. Taking advantage of living in the great PNW.
- Laying the groundwork for Blue Collar’s expansion.
- El Chapo was captured for the third time…without escape…yet.
- It sounds cheesy, but my family. Biking and trips to the Deschutes, popsicles on summer nights, lots of swimming…it’s so amazing to experience all this stuff again through young kids’ eyes.
- Seeing Blue Collar grow and being a part of it. Figuring out my work/life balance and taking as many trips with friends and family as I could.
- 100 inches of snow in December
2016: Year of the _______
- French Bulldog. Claude is 100 in human years. And still terrorizing the neighborhood!
- Flu! Man, we got walloped in 2016. Looking forward to a year of health and wellness ahead.
- Rock star losses
- Mountain bike
- Hilarious VR goggle face
What’s the coolest place you visited?
- Can’t decide between all of the cool places our van took us!
- Backpacking into the Enchantment Core Zone
- That’s a toss up between Austin, Texas and the Wallowa Mountains….
- To my daughter’s dorm room on move-in day!
- Ladies trip to Southern YEWtah!
- The biggest hole in the country: The Grand Canyon
- The sea floor in Bonaire
Best book/movie/show of the year
- The final season of Hell on Wheels
- Neon Demon
- The Hateful Eight…on 70mm film
- I was pleasantly surprised by Hell or High Water.
- Watching Deadpool with my son.
- Arrival (THREE of the mechanics agreed on this one)
Which activities made you lose track of time?
- Van Camping (vamping)
- Mountain biking (again, THREE of the mechanics agreed on this one)
- Listening to David Bowie’s Blackstar
- Kayaking—river time is a magical thing
- Shooting night photos. Stayed up most of a June night shooting meteor shower above Lost Lake.
- SCUBA (can’t lose track too much for obvious reasons)
Firsts in 2016
- SCUBA diving
- Snapchat. Everyone needs a mustache once in awhile.
- Embarked on my first landscaping endeavor. Designed and installed a new front garden. It was a lot more work than I had anticipated.
- Became a chicken farmer
- Got lost in the Mount Hood wilderness on an overnight hut-to-hut trip. I learned some very valuable lessons after that one!
- Dirtbiking (more importantly, learning how to wrestle one out of a ditch)
- Rebrand of Blue Collar Agency
Most memorable quote or phrase
- Call yourself on your own bullshit.
- “If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing with a helmet on”
- “Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations.” – Melchor Lim
- “Be good. If you can’t be good, be careful. If you can’t be careful, name it after me!”
- Got gout?
Your biggest accomplishment of 2016
- Making progress in kiteboarding. It’s been a long time since I’ve attempted to learn a new sport.
- Getting my SCUBA certification
- Teaching my 3 year old son to ski. The whole parenting thing just keep getting better and better (well, most of the time anyway).
- Becoming a senior designer here at Blue Collar and paying off my student loans!
- Successfully rafting the Grand Canyon—and only losing a pair of sunglasses and a few beers.
- Unbeknownst to me, Brooklyn Art Library made an online shop selling my prints from The Sketchbook Project.
Predictions for 2017
- VR will change the way we experience most everything
- Travel. Family. Friends. Fun. All of that please.
- I will travel internationally for the first time!
- More dirtbiking. Much, much more dirtbiking.
- Big snow. Lots of travel. Thinking about kitting out my car to be like a mini RV.
- We’ll leave a legacy by raising all the funds necessary to Save Tilly Jane. And we’ll celebrate with a big party up on Mt Hood!