Most true love stories go a little something like this: meet-cute, clear commonalities, sparks fly. And the union between Where I’m From and CBJ hockey is no different. Ever since we got together in 2018, it’s all made perfect sense.
There are three clear reasons our two organizations go together like peas and carrots. At the risk of being a little too on-the-nose, we’ll call it a hat trick.
1. Shared Roots
Sports fans are deeply passionate about their home teams. Often, their dedication is as much about their heritage and community as it is about the game being played. As fans, when we win, we celebrate together. When we lose, we lick our wounds and heal together. The backdrop to it all? A sense of hometown pride.
The Where I’m From/CBJ collaboration taps into that energy in a deeply personal way: after all, who better to help Blue Jackets fans celebrate the city that has shaped them—and unites them as a fanbase—than fellow Columbusites?
That’s right: company founders Ryan Napier and Andrew VanderLind have local roots. Born and raised in Columbus, Ryan and Andrew appreciate the city’s culture in ways only a local can—from the warm, family-friendly vibes to the rich cultural scene. The result is relatable apparel that authentically honors our city’s best qualities.
2. A Commitment to Columbus
Collaborating with Where I’m From presented a unique opportunity to partner with a like-minded organization: one with a deep commitment to the community. What do we mean by that? Two things:
First, since its humble beginnings in 2014 in a college dorm, all Where I’m From apparel—Blue Jackets or otherwise— has been designed and printed in Columbus, where the company remains headquartered today.
Second, Where I’m From is truly a community player. They work with some of the area’s most-loved organizations to ensure that they’re giving back to their neighbors and making the city a better place. Highlights include:
- Hockey & Hounds: Where I’m From has produced and sold apparel for Hockey & Hounds for four years—and all proceeds are donated to the organization. Hockey & Hounds supports pet adoptions, volunteering, and charitable efforts in the greater-Columbus area.
- 3rd & Goal: Where I’m From has designed, produced and donated all apparel and swag for 3rd & Goal’s signature fundraising event for five years and counting. The organization, founded by former NFL quarterback and Columbus-area native Brady Quinn, is committed to making a difference in the lives of veterans through home improvements and scholarship programs.
Aside from their long-term commitments to Hockey & Hounds and 3rd & Goal, Where I’m From also supports organizations like Nationwide Children's and the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio.
Giving back to the community is a value that Where I’m From and the Columbus Blue Jackets share —and another reason we make a great match.
3. An Emphasis on Quality
A hallmark of official Columbus Blue Jackets apparel is quality. We have high expectations for materials, construction and longevity (you can read more about our emphasis on quality related to jerseys specifically here). It’s simple: Blue Jackets fans deserve the best, and Where I’m From delivers.
Every piece of Where I’m From apparel is custom manufactured in the United States. This gives the Where I’m From team an ability to meticulously preserve quality, down to the smallest details: the exact hue of each t-shirt, the exact length of sleeves, the fabric blends, the color and length of hoodie strings—each fine point of a garment is tweaked to perfection.
A Clear Win
At the end of the day, as our team sees it, Where I’m From is truly about bringing it home: celebrating AND supporting AND progressing the community, while delivering the best product they can to their customers. Simply put, our Where I’m From collaboration is a no-brainer—and we couldn’t be happier about working together.