Custom Shirts for Red Earth Running Company
Red Earth Running Co. calls the Meskwaki Indian Settlement in Tama, IA home. Meskwaki means “Red Earth People,” and the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa are more commonly called the Meskwaki Nation.
Dirk Whitebreast, founder and owner of Red Earth Running Co., started running in the fall of 2003. Previously that year, his 18-year old sister had committed suicide.
“It changed everything. The day I got that phone call was the last time I touched alcohol. Running became an outlet to grieve and heal.”
Running didn’t come easy for Dirk. In the beginning, a 5k took him about 50 minutes. But time provided the healing, strength, confidence and discipline he needed to turn his life around. 14 years later, Dirk has run 45 marathons in 22 states, and that doesn’t even take into account the countless half marathons and shorter distance races.
Running plays an integral role for Dirk, allowing him to share his story – the hardships and the successes. Red Earth Running Co. serves as a vehicle to share the stories of others. The stories of indigenous runners and the territories where they run. The stories the mainstream media, and society in general, overlooks.
Inform. Influence. Inspire.
These are the goals of Red Earth. As a company, RERC wants to highlight the great culture and history of indigenous running, bringing acknowledgement to the contributions indigenous peoples have given to the sport. As the company grows, they hope to change the process by which mainstream companies utilize the contributions from indigenous runners and allocate a portion of the revenues back to the communities who contribute so much.
In their initial year, RERC hopes to earn a reputation of being motivated, driven, credible and honest. That reputation will help them establish solid footing within the existing running community, and they will build out from there. Ultimately, RERC aims to be the go-to company for all things related to indigenous running. Their brand has started out strong. They’ve pledged their support for a local 5k. And just two weeks after officially opening, they received their first large order. Their custom shirts and custom sweatshirts have already crossed into Nevada, Arizona, Oregon, California and Minnesota!
Dirk wants to be a driving force, bringing much deserved and needed attention to the indigenous community. But he also wants RERC to be seen as an inclusive organization.
“Running serves many purposes to many people. All runners are welcome to join our community. Unity in health. Strength in numbers. We are open to partnering and collaborating with anyone who recognizes the many benefits that running provides to our overall quality of life.”
If you, or your company, is interested in working with a local screen printer, reach out to us. We work with companies and customers of all sizes to help expand their brand. Check out other examples of custom shirts we’ve done in the past.