By: Patrick Larson (Harrier Founder)
About a year ago, I launched The Harrier from my apartment with just a handful of t shirts and little to no expectations for what was ahead. Our world looked drastically different a year ago as most people were in strict quarantine, myself being no exception. Like many people, I was quickly forced to work from home where I lived by myself. In a matter of days, I went from interacting with people on a daily basis for my job and with my running club to having zero human interaction aside from the deluge of zoom happy hours inundating my calendar. When I think back on the creation of The Harrier, in so many ways I was searching for a way to replace the lack of community that I had come to thrive on before quarantine. While I consider myself an introverted person who doesn't necessarily need constant social stimulation, there is no doubt how much of my mental and physical health is derived from my ability to identify as part of a community. I may not have known it in the moment, but The Harrier community became that replacement and the driving force for why I continue to feel motivated to pursue this venture.
(The first iteration of The Harrier Flagship Crew)
Even a year later, I'm still truly honored and humbled whenever someone sends me an Instagram DM, purchases a shirt, wants to contribute to the blog, or shares our content. The Harrier is a team effort and wouldn't be possible without the many people who have helped contribute designs for apparel, writers who have created content, and the running community who has invested in The Harrier and made it possible for us to continue pursuing new and exciting projects. Our world is slowly opening up again and I'm able to re-engage with the various communities I identified with before the pandemic. That being said, I feel more connected to The Harrier community than ever before.
About two months ago, I was in Portland to race the 10k at the Portland Track Festival. That weekend, I was out for a casual run around the city when I saw someone biking toward me wearing what looked like a Harrier shirt. As they got closer, I couldn't believe my eyes as they were in fact rocking an OG Dripchoge shirt. I felt an immense amount of pride in that moment, not because someone had purchased a shirt, but because in that moment I saw someone who shared my deep passion for the sport--I saw myself! And if that person is reading this blog, I sincerely apologize for how much I stared, but there is no matching the feeling of coming across someone who believes in the sport and believes in this brand. There have been times when I'm not sure if pursuing this venture is worth the time commitment. I've spent more time than I wish to admit folding shirts, putting labels on packages, and getting to know my local USPS guy. But moments like Portland have pushed me to continue because I believe in the power of running to make someone a better person and the power the running community has to push and grow the sport--if The Harrier can play even the slightest role in that, we'll have done our job.
(Scene of the crime: The night before the Winter Collection Drop. Ironing, sewing labels, and getting product ready. My apartment doubles as HQ and warehouse)
So with that, I'd like to introduce the Have Yourself a Day Collection. This collection marks the one year anniversary of The Harrier and is the first time our brand slogan has appeared on apparel. A year ago I landed on "Have Yourself a Day" as the brand slogan because I believed it could be relatable to every runner while also meaning something different to each person. Having yourself a day could mean going for an easy jog with friends, chasing your next PR, or finding quiet solitude on a run by yourself. Running is a beautiful and deeply personal endeavor and each individual deserves to have themselves a day no matter their relationship with the sport.
I'm eternally grateful for everyone who has chosen to follow along on this journey and support The Harrier. Through this business, I've met so many incredibly talented people who all share the same love for the sport and how it can transform a person. I'm confident that this is just the beginning and there are so many exciting things to come for The Harrier and what we can provide for the running community.
The Have Yourself a Day Collection will be dropping tonight to our email list at 8pm cst. You can subscribe to the email list below. Otherwise, the collection will be live on our website at 9am CST tomorrow (July 13th).
Thank you all for your continued support. I'm incredibly lucky to have found another community of people who share my passion for the sport.
Have Yourself a Day!