Chums Celebrates 35 Years with American Rivers Partnership

June 7, 2018

Partnership aims to give back and help inspire activation surrounding river conservation issues

Salt Lake City, UT (June 7, 2018) – Chums, travel and active lifestyle accessory brand is pleased to announce a partnership with American Rivers, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting and restoring wild rivers and water sources. The partnership celebrates Chums’ 35th anniversary and the Wild and Scenic River Act’s 50th anniversary, significant milestones for both organizations. The two companies, in addition to celebrating milestones, will work together to drive river advocacy through education and philanthropy.

Chums was founded in 1983 by Mike Taggett, who designed the original Chums retainer as a simple solution to keep expensive sunglasses from slipping into the rapids as he guided river trips. Dedicated to the rivers of Utah and Idaho where the company calls home, Chums is honoring its connection to its surrounding waterways and celebrating its future by partnering with American Rivers. Chums will commemorate the partnership with support of American Rivers’ 5,000 Miles of Wild® campaign and by donating 50% of net proceeds from a limited-edition collection of 35th Anniversary promo wear directly to American Rivers.

“American Rivers is the perfect partner for us,” said Colleen Gilligan, Director of Marketing at Chums. “Its dedication to preservation, conservation and protection of wild rivers for future generations resonates with Chums. Everyone is impacted by a wild river, whether on a large or small scale. We invite our Chums community to celebrate our anniversary by paying it forward to what inspired Chums in the first place—the river. We welcome all levels of involvement and couldn’t be more excited to build an enduring relationship with American Rivers.”

The 5,000 Miles of Wild® campaign is led by a coalition of conservation organizations and leaders in the outdoor industry that aim to protect 5,000 new miles of Wild and Scenic Rivers and one million acres of public land over the next three years. The coalition includes brands such as Chums, American Whitewater, NRS, OARS, YETI, REI and Chaco. Chums will share its heritage with a series of river stories and encourage its community to do the same. These stories aim to inspire personal connections to the river, share support for river stewardship and protection, and contribute to the campaign’s goal of 5,000 stories over the next three years.

To kick-off the partnership, Chums invited American Rivers to join key brand representatives on a rafting trip through Desolation Canyon for educational fireside chats, content creation and conversations about love for life on the river. The content created on this celebratory and exploratory journey will be shared via consumer-facing campaigns as the organizations educate the community on multiple facets of river life: the importance of healthy rivers, endangered rivers, river conservation and preservation, conserving clean water, and most importantly how each and every one of us can make a difference and protect our local waterways.

“We were delighted when Chums first approached us for partnership as they are a brand we have always admired,” said Amy Kober, National Communications Director at American Rivers. “Chums has a lot of soul and passion, as well as an amazing history on the river. Throughout our discussions, it is clear we both share the same ambitions and goals. We are excited to build a long-term reciprocal relationship with Chums that promotes river advocacy through education.”

On July 25, 2018, Chums will release a limited-edition collection of 35th Anniversary promo wear, with 50% of net proceeds directly benefiting American Rivers. Chums will also host a 35th Birthday Party happy hour during the Summer Outdoor Retailer Show in Denver, Colorado, honoring American Rivers. The event will educate brand representatives and industry collegues on the dangers our rivers face and encourage attendees to get involved. All drink proceeds will directly benefit American Rivers.

“We look forward to engaging our friends and consumers in conservation, empowering them with knowledge, and giving them a platform to get inspired and get involved,” said Colleen Gilligan.


American Rivers protects wild rivers, restores damaged rivers and conserves clean water for people and nature. Since 1973, American Rivers has protected and restored more than 150,000 miles of rivers through advocacy efforts, on-the-ground projects and an annual America’s Most Endangered Rivers® campaign. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., American Rivers has offices across the country and more than 275,000 members, supporters and volunteers. Find out more at www.AmericanRivers.org


In 1983, a Colorado River guide sought a simple way to keep his sunglasses out of the river. Through this innovative idea the Original Cotton Chum was born. Thirty-five years later, Chums is now a global brand that offers a wide range of outdoor products and apparel. Chums’ mantra is simple: provide fun, quality products to enjoy while at work or play. Chums: Helping You Hang On Since 1983. Find out more at www.Chums.com