Winter has without a doubt established a firm hold on Ellicottville and the region, with the slopes of HoliMont and Holiday Valley full of visitors who have all but forgotten the tumultuous start to the season. Sooner than later, however, the sun and warm temps will return to the area, with thoughts beginning to shift from powder turns to patio sessions. A few of the local specialty shops in town will be locking their doors for the spring and summer months, however, one location in particular that will NOT be closing up shop is The City Garage. For the past 16 years, The City Garage has remained committed to being a year-round lifestyle and outdoor equipment retailer. SNOWED-IN sat down with the gang at the C.G., who were excited to reveal what products will be awaiting those visiting in the warmer months.
Located smack dab downtown, The City Garage is popularly known for their incredible selection of ski equipment, goggles, winter apparel and accessories. Brands like Salomon, K2, The North Face, Lange and Scarpa are just a few of the premium lines they carry for winter enthusiasts. What helps to set the C.G. apart, is the time and effort they spend scouring shows - like Outdoor Retailer - to find brands that while are extremely functional and useful, the casual buyer would be interested in buying as well. And while many may consider the months outside of ski season as the “off season,” there is truly no such thing for owners/operators Elizabeth and Sean ‘Boss Wrench’ Lowes, and their dedicated, specialized staff.
We caught up with Sean, fresh off of a day on the slopes - as he, just like the rest of his staff, live to use the products they sell. One of the most exciting new brands to Sean is YETI coolers. Known as the number one premium cooler brand in the world, they’re often referred to as the cooler “built for going toe to toe with hungry grizzlies.” In all seriousness, these coolers and their array of products are a must-have for hunters, fishermen, outdoorsmen, and even the “high tech redneck,” Sean affectionately revealed. His passion behind the brand was evident as he went through a few of the items they carry. Among them, the ‘Hopper’ - a soft sided, leak and tear proof cooler which retails for $299.99. Despite the seemingly high price, the cooler delivers amazing results, as it has the ability to keep ice frozen for days on end. (This cooler will NOT let you down during your three-day camping trip.) If a cooler of this magnitude isn’t quite up your alley, not to worry, the Garage also has some smaller everyday items from YETI. One of Sean’s favorites is the YETI ‘Colster’ - a can koozie with a metal exterior. Proudly labeling this item as “AWESOME!”, Sean elaborated that through meticulous testing, the Garage crew discovered the last sip from the ‘Colster’ was just as cold as the very first! Now that you know the product was tested and approved, you can pick up your very own for $29.99. Lastly, Lowes was excited to talk about a product he likened to an “old friend always there for him”, the YETI ‘Rambler’ - a ten ounce lowball, good for keeping your morning coffee hot, or your evening high ball cold. Starting at $24.99, the ‘Rambler’ comes in 20 and 30oz sizes, depending on your intake level.
Ok, enough about coolers. I think you get the point that they’re pretty rad. Here’s a quick snapshot of some of the other stellar products on the C.G. floor – browse a variety of shoes, clothing and accessories unique to The City Garage, and perfect for all seasons. Men’s and women’s fashions from Kuhl clothing, The North Face, and Hippy Tree can be found adorning the racks. If you’re looking for footwear, Salomon, Birkenstock, and Keen have been their mainstays for years. New this year, they’re also spotlighting X-0, which produces minimalist sandals. In the market for a stand-up paddleboard? The City Garage has been a proud dealer of BIC Stand-up products for the previous six years, and can outfit you with the perfect board size, shape, and paddle combination for your needs. When it comes time to take a load off from all the adventuring you’ve done, The City Garage also has a variety of ‘glamping’ supplies from Stanley and Eno hammocks to make sure you end the day in style and comfort.
We talk often in SNOWED-IN about the importance of shopping local. The City Garage is quite a unique, specialty shop one will only find right here in the village of Ellicottville. From their custom apparel and hats bearing the zip code 14731, to their exuberant staff eager to talk about the town and happenings at the local resorts, you won’t regret stepping foot inside their Monroe Street location to explore what they’re all about. Whether you’re looking to schedule a boot fitting, inquire about the latest ski technology, or simply want to find out where the powder stashes are at, you can give them a buzz at 716-699-2054 to pick their brains. You can also follow them on Instagram and Facebook, where you’ll get behind-the-scenes looks of the back shop, as well as stunning imagery of their crew out living the brand. Whatever you do, stop in, introduce yourself, and see why many make The City Garage a must stop each and every time they visit Ellicottville!