Letters

Letters 09-29-2014

Benishek Doesn’t Understand

Congressman Benishek claims to understand the needs of families, yet he wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which would cause about 10 million people to lose their health insurance. He must think as long as families can hold fundraisers they don’t need insurance...

(Un)Truth In Advertising

Constant political candidate ads on TV are getting to be too much to bear 45 days before the election...

Rare Tuttle Rebuttal

Finally, I disagree with Stephen Tuttle. His “Cherry Bomb” column in the 8/4/14 issue totally dismayed me. I always love his wit and the slamming of the 1 percent. His use of fact and hyperbole highlights the truth; until “Cherry Bomb.” Oh man, Stephen...

Say No To Fluoride

Do you or your child’s teeth have white, yellow, orange, brown, stains, spots, streaks, cloudy splotches or pitting? If so, you may be among millions of Americans who now have a condition called dental fluorosis...

Questions Of Freedom

The administration’s “Affordable Health Care Act” has ordered religious orders to provide contraception and chemical abortions against the church’s God given beliefs and teachings … an interesting order, considering the First Amendment’s clear prohibitions...

Stop The Insults & Talk

I found it interesting that Ms. Minervini used the Northern Express to push the Safe Harbor agenda for a 90-bed homeless shelter in Traverse City with a tactic that is also being utilized by members of the city commission. Those of us who oppose the project are being labeled as uncompassionate citizens...

Roads and Republicans

Each time you hit a road crater while driving, thank the “nerd” and the Tea Party controlled Republican legislature.

Home · Articles · News · Features · High 5
. . . .

High 5

Erin Crowell - August 22nd, 2011

High Five to the Hand: It’s ‘all Michigan’all the time for 3 entrepreneurs
By Erin Crowell
In Michigan, we know how to use our hands – from hard labor and sipping
local spirits to geographically showing our location; yes, if you’re a
Michigander, at one point you’ve probably thrown up that palm for an
out-of-stater and pointed (whether a wrinkle or pinky) to where you live.
Thanks to its shape, Michigan is the hardest U.S. state to draw but likely
the most identifiable.
It’s this identification that is the idea behind High Five Threads, a
product line celebrating not only Michigan’s unique shape, but its
culture.
“We want to show Michigan is more than just backwoods cottages,” said
Byron Pettigrew, one of three owners of the Traverse City-based store
which sells all-Michigan products. Located in the Village of the Grand
Traverse Commons, High Five Threads will host its grand opening on
Thursday, Aug. 25, from 5-7 p.m.
HIGH FIVE
The company’s most popular product includes its t-shirts printed on Bella
& Canvas Brand cotton, which uses an athletic-style cut.
Such designs include the High Five Threads logo, a hand drawn in place of
the Lower Peninsula; “Vinted in” and “Brewed in” with the outline of the
Lower Peninsula shaped as a wine and beer glass, respectively; the
DueceThirtyOne, our region’s response to Detroit’s 313 and 616 branded
shirts; and the very popular “Keep It Fresh” lake print—a Great Lakes-only
rendering celebrating the natural beauty that surrounds us, as well as
what makes the outline of the state stand out.
“We practically sold out of shirts within our first week and a half of
opening,” said Brad Kula, who deals with the marketing and business end of
the company.
Other products include the High Five Threads logo vinyl decal, glassware,
Fishtown coffee, homemade treats from Traverse City’s D.O.G. bakery and a
Michigan-shaped (Lower and Upper Peninsula represented) ice cube tray,
which was designed and manufactured entirely in Michigan.
Materials and assembly for the tray are represented in Howell,
Chesterfield, Shelby Township, St. Clair Shores, Harrison Township,
Midland and Clarkston.
Lance Hill, the company’s “chief creator” of design (as he puts it,
laughing), has created all the logos and rendering of High Five’s
products, save the “Awesome Mitten” and “Detroit Hustles Harder” designs.

THE COMPANY
Before the trio graduated from Kalkaska High School in 2004, Hill and
Pettigrew were already operating a part-time business; Sound Bytes—an
entertainment and DJ service for private parties and corporate events they
started at age 15—still exists today (check them out at
soundbytesdjs.com).
In 2010, Pettigrew, Hill and Kula launched their marketing and design
company, Lit Image, which helps clients do everything from graphic design
and branding to photography and event planning.
The online company met most of their clients face-to-face at the Grand
Traverse Commons, so when the opportunity presented itself to snag some
retail space in the building, the three believed a move there seemed the
most logical step.
The small space serves as both a store and headquarters for their multiple
businesses –- with plans to expand their product line into sweatshirts,
hats and other clothing, according to Hill.
There’s no argument that these 24-year-olds, each a month apart, have the
business savvy and overall drive to see a vision through to a profitable
endeavor. However, their drive is more than just about doing business –
it’s about helping Michigan, and the people who live here, make a name for
themselves.
“When we were in high school, practically everyone wanted to leave the
state,” said Pettigrew. “We want to show this generation that Michigan is
actually a really cool place to be.”
High five to that, man!

 
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