Hoodies on the runway might sound ho-hum to some, but Dick’s Sporting Goods’ first New York runway show Wednesday night was not just about the clothes.
The celebrity wattage was provided by Alex Rodriguez, HBO “Euphoria” actor Javon Walton, ABC “Bachelor” star Demi Burnett and soccer star Carli Lloyd, who hit the runway in lifestyle looks from Nike, Adidas, Patagonia, Champion and other brands sold at the retailer. Afterward, A-Rod admitted the show was an easy sell. “It was in New York City. I believe in the product and it’s just fun to be here,” he said.
Down coats, pom-pom hats, shorts, printed leggings, sneakers and various other gym-to-street looks were modeled by a diverse, intergenerational group at the Caldwell Factory in Chelsea. Dick’s Sporting Goods’ chief executive officer Edward Stack was not at the show, but his just-released book “It’s How We Play the Game: Build a Business. Take a Stand. Make a Difference.” is keeping the retail operation in the news for more than sporting goods.
After the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012, Stack wasted no time in pulling AR-15 assault rifles from the chain’s stores and destroying $5 million worth of guns. Six years later, following the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Fla., Dick’s raised the age for buying guns at its stores to 21. That decision was made after investigators determined the Parkland shooter had bought a shotgun at Dick’s, although that was not the one he used in the massacre. Now the 700-plus retail operation is considering banning selling guns altogether — an issue that has stirred up a wide range of constitutional debate. There was no reference to gun control during Wednesday’s show or at any point in the event.
After the show, Burnett spoke of lighter matters, namely how she signed up for the fashion show, after seeing how cute all the outfits were. Wearing a pom-pom hat, a long-sleeve base layer, down vest and printed leggings, she wasn’t interested in hawking brands. “I’m a small-town girl so I really don’t know much about brands and what I have on. I know my hat is Patagonia and this [pullover] is Nike. I don’t know — I look great.”