Blackrock Outdoor Company is a locally owned and operated outdoor gear shop well-known for it’s location in downtown Sylva. The thriving business opened its second location in WCU’s Noble Hall on Feb. 27 and it has sparked the interest of many students and faculty.
The addition of the store along with Subway, Chili’s, Bob’s Mini Mart and the recently opened Mad Stone Cafe & Catching Light Books is the result of a fire that burned down the previous building in November of 2013. While the loss of that building disappointed many in the Cullowhee community, the multiplex of Noble Hall is proof of progress and growth on WCU’s campus.
Winning Blue Ridge Outdoor Magazine’s “Top Adventure School” title three years running made the need for having easy access to outdoor gear apparent.
The on-campus location centers its image around two things- gear and beer. The space is part bar, part retail shop for outdoor gear that is catered to customers that are primarily college students. The company sells eno hammocks, Kavu bags, Yeti cups, Patagonia pullovers and many more popular products and brands fitting for a school that prides itself on outdoor recreation.
The variety of beer offered at the in-store bar largely come from local breweries including Sylva, Franklin, Waynesville, Bryson City and Asheville.
“We’re local and we like to give back to local businesses,” said Megan Goebel, store manager.
Goebel explained that Blackrock Outdoor Company’s WCU location was designed to be a place that is inviting to everyone, not just people who are interesting in drinking beer. Many students and faculty come to the shop with their laptops and books to study or grade papers in a place that has a relaxing atmosphere.
A big bonus that many college students can appreciate is that, as long as they are open, they can serve you a beer. So, even on the days they are open at 10 a.m., the bar is in full operation!
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