- Todd Harder, Creek, a young energetic entrepreneur, brought seven
people with him to sell 500 pairs of limited edition of Vans Pendleton
shoes at the 58th Annual Chicago Powwow at Navy Pier this past weekend.
It was a good thing he brought the help
because the Vans "Off the Wall" booth was busy throughout
The limited edition shoes are made by
Vans with geometric designs provided by Pendleton. The shoes are
touted as the "hottest shoes in NDN Country."
Vans Pendleton Shoes
Vans has released limited runs
of these shoes for the past two years. Each run consists of completely
different designs and colors. The released run consists of a special
collection of Pendleton S8-His, Classic Slip-ons and Chukka Lows.
Shoe prices start at $65 per pair.
We have been busy, people like these
shoes and it is going for a good cause, said Niko Desjarlais,
Otoe/Choctaw, who stayed busy in between assisting customers by
keeping the booth neat and organized.
"All of the proceeds go to Nibwaakaawin,
which puts on the All Nations Skate Jam. The people here in the
booth are volunteers, so we can contribute more money the cause,"
stated Harder, who broke away from assisting customers long enough
to talk about the endeavor.
by Harder, Nibwaakaawin is a non-profit organization dedicated to
the education and empowerment of Native youth. The organization's
mission is "to foster creativity, build courage, enable cultural
identity and pride, and promote non-violent and healthy physical
activity through skateboarding."
Nibwaakaawin is an Ojibwe
word which means wisdom
"I believe in what
the American Indian Center of Chicago is doing and I thought this
would be a great venue to sell these shoes," said Harder. The
American Indian Center of Chicago runs the weekend powwow.
In addition to operating Nibwaakaawin,
Harder operates Red Paint, a custom embroidery and screen printing
business and Native Skates, a company that produces high quality
skate decks and wheels to help promote Native pride and skateboarding
among Native youth. All of his business enterprises are located
in Adrian, Michigan.
Red Paint supplies silk-screen printed
items to several tribes in the Great Lakes region.
Any unsold Vans Pendleton shoes are available