In response to the positive feedback from the recent reboot of the Rhode Island Foundation’s Buy Local RI initiative, the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau (PWCVB) and Rhode Island Hospitality Association (RIHA) have partnered with Frog & Toad to launch a limited run of exclusive Buy Local RI T-shirts. The project is an exciting way to show support for local businesses, artists, and the hospitality industry as a whole with a portion of the proceeds being donated to the Rhode Island Hospitality Employee Relief Fund.
“We’re excited to continue this partnership, highlighting the Buy Local RI brand,” said Neil D. Steinberg, president and CEO of the Rhode Island Foundation “The hospitality industry is second-to-none in Rhode Island and has been hit hard by the pandemic. We encourage Rhode Islanders to support this effort and to proudly display their support for our vibrant, diverse, local business community.”
“Ever since the Rhode Island Foundation gave us the go-ahead to relaunch the Buy Local RI campaign last December, we’ve received daily requests to bring back the original rooster T-shirts,” said Kristen Adamo, PWCVB president and CEO. “This project was an opportunity to showcase the awesome collaborative nature among our business, hospitality, and artist communities. These shirts are designed, printed, and sold locally while also directly supporting many of our family, friends, or neighbors in the hospitality industry in need of financial assistance.”
“We’re grateful that our partners chose to support the RI Hospitality Employee Relief Fund through this campaign,” said Dale Venturini, RIHA president and CEO. “As public places of accommodation, the hospitality industry was the first to be shut down by executive orders resulting in thousands of unemployment claims. There are five generations working in our industry struggling to provide for themselves and their families due to wages lost from reduced hours and complete closures over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Three different designs will be released over the next several weeks. The first T-shirt features the original Buy Local RI brand design while the next two shirts showcase fun variations of the brand created by two local artists, Maret Bondorew and Michael Ezzell. The availability of the two new designs will be announced in April.
The shirts are $22 each and only available for purchase online at frogandtoadstore.com beginning Monday, March 22. Curbside pickup is available at Frog & Toad’s 795 Hope St. location. They also offer free nationwide shipping on orders over $50.
“A campaign to support the hardworking small businesses here in Rhode Island all while raising money for the RI Hospitality Relief Fund is an honor to be a part of,” said Frog & Toad co-owner Asher Schofield. “So many folks in the hospitality industry have suffered this past year that it's only right we do what we can to lend a hand. We're Rhode Islanders. We look out for one another."
For more information about the RI Hospitality Employee Relief Fund, please visit rihospitality.org/RIHEF-Employee-Relief-Fund.
For more information about 100 Ways to Buy Local RI, please visit BuyLocalRI.org.