TIN CUP WHISKEY MAY be named after a tiny Colorado ghost town, but its new “Give it a Shot” program aims to get new athletes from around the country immersed in the great outdoors, from Atlanta to San Francisco.
The “Give it a Shot” program opens applications today for one of 140 spots to “inspire and empower new adventures.” Of the applications, 60 people — plus a “partner in adventure” of that person’s choosing — will get to participate in a beginner-focused outdoor weekend near cities across the country. REI will provide the loaner gear and instruction to help first-timers learn the basics of sports like rock climbing, mountain biking, snowshoeing, or winter hiking. In all sessions, Tin Cup ambassadors like professional climbers Adrian Ballinger and Emily Harrington or skier Cody Townsend will be on-hand to give participants professional guidance and real-world tips.
The program is primarily for first-time athletes who have run into hurdles when trying to learn a new sport, but there are no strict requirement on who can or can’t participant. To apply, applicants will fill out a quick form on the Tin Cup website with what they’d like to learn and why they want to experience that activity. The process should take most users around 10 minutes and applications must be received by January 10, 2022.
In the United States, participants in adventure sports have been primarily white. Until the mid-20th century, many parks and recreational areas were segregated, which meant many Black, Native American, and otherwise non-white Americans grew up without having access to outdoor spaces and were raised in communities where where extreme sports weren’t an option. Add to that housing policies that pushed non-white residents into cities and the continuing inequality in the United States regarding safety and the judicial system, and it’s a recipe for poor representation in the outdoors.
The Tin Cup and REI partnership hopes to open a few more doors to members of traditional underrepresented groups with the “Give it a Shot” program. Both companies have a reputation for supporting equality and diversity in the outdoors and beyond. Tin Cup Whiskey works with organizations dedicated to outdoor diversity like “Brown Folks Fishing” and supports non-profit organizations focused on environmental protection and building healthy communities in mountain towns. REI has long been an advocate for environmental and social-justice causes, from it’s famous “Opt Outside” Black Friday campaign to its support of hundreds of non-profit organizations.