As many hospitals and healthcare workers across the nation face shortages of essential supplies, a number of Utah companies have diverted their efforts to support the nationwide effort to manage the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ski Utah wanted to take a moment to recognize these hometown heroes and offer sincere thanks for their selflessness and commitment to the health and well-being of our community and beyond.
Goggles for Docs
Companies like U.S. Ski and Snowboard, Squatters Brew Pub, GIRO, Ski Utah, and Smith have all been chipping in to support the collection of new, old, used or unused snow goggles for Goggles for Docs. Ski goggles effectively serve as personal protection equipment (PPE) for frontline and healthcare workers. Goggles for Docs collects and distributes donated goggles to healthcare workers and personnel who currently have no eye protection as they treat Covid-19 patients. Ski Utah is accepting donations at locations in Salt Lake City and Park City if you’d like to help this cause. Click Here for info!
Utah-based Smith Optics has joined a global corporate initiative called #United4EyeCare. In partnership with their manufacturer, the Safilo Group headquartered in Padua, Italy, a portion of manufacturing capacity is being redirected to create safety glasses and facial shields to supply areas in critical need. Pandemic hot spots in Italy, Spain and the United States are targeted to receive much-needed PPE. Having produced a batch of 10,000 protective glasses and face shields, the companies plan to continue making more to support healthcare workers across multiple countries battling Covid-19.
Beloved local ski manufacturer, DPS Skis shifted production of high-end skis over to manufacturing reusable, medical-grade plastic face shields for the Utah Department of Health and others. With the ability to rapidly develop and prototype skis, DPS was able to quickly partner with three other companies and shift their focus to producing face shields right here in Salt Lake City.
Eastman Machine Company provided tools and Goal Zero was able to lend assistance in purchasing the appropriate raw materials. Petzl, a gear and climbing company with North American headquarters in Salt Lake City, helped out with headbands that are typically utilized in their extensive line of headlamps for outdoor users. This group was able to produce over 80,000 medical-grade face shields to be built and delivered to the Utah Department of Health by the end of May. DPS expects to deliver shipments of 10,000 additional face shields to medical facilities across Utah, Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming and the Navajo Nation.
Five Wives Vodka
Want another reason to toss back another martini with locally-distilled Five Wives Vodka? This Ogden company has been busy churning out batches of hand sanitizer, working non-stop to supplement the crushing demand for this critical supply. Note that this isn’t the alcohol you should be drinking—it’s strictly for sanitation purposes!
Over the last five weeks, Five Wives has labored to produce over 11,000 gallons of hand sanitizer. To understand this feat, note that the distillery produced 33,000 gallons of spirits in the year 2019. The distillery is now selling the hand sanitizer at cost and has donated countless gallons to local businesses and those in need. Recipients include major hospitals, the State of Utah, local police departments, fire departments, hospice organizations, homes for the elderly, child care centers, Hill Air Force Base, the FBI, local court systems, trucking companies, UPS, virus testing centers, U.S. Marshals and hospitals in the Navajo Nation.
If your organization is in need of a full gallon, submit a request via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you need to stock up on delicious, local spirits, visit the Five Wives website for more info. In addition, Ogden’s Own is donating all profits from liquor sales during the months of March and April back to the bar and dining industry through donations to their staff who have been furloughed by closure of restaurants and bars.
Meet Daleboot Ski Boots, the last remaining ski boot manufacturer based in America. On April 2, Dale Boots transitioned portions of its factory line in Salt Lake City to produce PPE. Ski boot manufacturing lines have been converted to produce face shields for first responders and medical professionals. The worldwide shortage of PPE has inspired Dale Boots to reach a goal of producing tens of thousands of shields per week. As the ski season abruptly ended in March, owner Robert Graham realized there was opportunity for his company to have a positive impact. Graham stated:
“We have partners and suppliers in Italy and our European headquarters in Austria. We closely monitored the devastation that was rolling across northern Italy and the message was loud and clear from all those on the front lines; there is a dire need for PPE. Due to the nature of our business, ski boots and orthopedic products, we know a lot more about bones than viruses. However, faced with this pandemic, and the worldwide shortage of protective medical supplies, we’re trying to pitch in, as best we can, to help protect our health care professionals. It was time for us to get involved to help protect those trying to save lives, and the whole company is behind that.”
For more information on the Dale Boot Facial Shield, or to place orders for the product, please email: PPE@daleboot.com
Alpha Coffee, located at the base of Big Cottonwood Canyon, is a beloved local coffee joint that just opened a new location in West Jordan. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Alpha Coffee continues to fulfill their philanthropic mission to send donated coffee to troops deployed overseas. The Alpha Coffee family also strives to support Utah businesses and features many locally produced food and snack items in their stores.
Alpha Coffee is still offering gift cards and to-go orders from both locations. Supporting Alpha Coffee during this time also supports troops abroad as well as the many Utah businesses whose goods are sold at Alpha. I adore their breakfast burrito and often use it as the ideal fuel for a big day of skiing in Little or Big Cottonwood Canyon.
Ski Utah sponsor and glove manufacturer Hestra has donated 38,000 pairs of gloves to first responders in Colorado. These lucky first responders will have some of the best gloves in the world to remain safe and healthy while they work to support and serve COVID-19 patients and the general public.
Alpine Distilling in Park City began whipping up small batches of hand sanitizer for close friends before the Summit County first responder team came knocking. The distillery immediately committed to producing sanitizer for the fire, police, sheriff, EMT and first responder crews in Summit County. To help the local community, Alpine Distilling also created some great DIY videos to teach people how to make sanitizer in their own homes. See their Instagram account for more info and be sure to support this small business next time you crave a delicious cocktail.
Kit Lender is a premier gear rental service for outdoor enthusiasts providing top-notch gear rental options for snow sports, camping and hiking—shipped directly to your doorstep or your adventure destination. Kit Lender has shipped over 120 Smith Optics goggles to hospitals across the country including New York Presbyterian Hospital, Mount Sinai Hospitals, Elmhurst Hospital in Illinois, St. John's Health, Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, Baylor Scott & White Health and Augusta University Health in Georgia. They are also helping to spread the word about the Goggles for Docs initiative.
The Park City based online gear retailer, Backcountry.com has donated 9,000 face masks to vulnerable individuals in New York City, with a focus on assisting the homeless population. An additional 1,000 masks have been provided to their own employees in Virginia and Utah. To further their efforts, Backcountry.com has also launched an online fundraiser where shoppers may opt to donate to a fund that will continue to produce more face masks. As of mid-April, the company had raised $46,000 and donated an additional 14,000 masks to the New York City Department of Homeless Services. The fundraiser is still running and 100% of profits go directly to masks to be donated to the homeless and frontline workers in New York City. Donate here.
In addition, the company aims to support University of Utah Healthcare workers by donating 400 apparel kits including a daypack, a fleece top and a pair of jogging shoes.
Helpful COVID-19 Resources
For excellent resources and information regarding the spread of the COVID-19 virus, check out the University of Utah Health website. There you’ll find information on virus screening, symptoms and tips on social distancing. For a plethora of informative articles about protecting the physical and mental health of you and your family during this difficult time, check out their many articles on The Scope Blog.