Maryville College merchandise now in stores

August 23, 2010
Contact: Karen B. Eldridge, Director of Communications
865.981.8207; Karen.eldridge@maryvillecollege.edu

Soon, Blount County shoppers will see more orange and garnet in their shopping aisles.

Partnering with Knoxville-based Bacon & Company, Maryville College’s Marketing Office provided most of the designs for a variety of merchandise to sell to the general public.

T-shirts, polo shirts, cups, mugs, caps, stadium blankets, car flags, tote bags and Frisbees are now available (or soon will be) at Wal-Mart, Walgreens, CVS, Kroger and Food City stores in Alcoa and Maryville.

“For Maryville College, this is an investment in our community. We are excited to grow our presence as the hometown college,” said Mary Leidig, the College’s director of marketing. “We have excellent merchandise and great variety in our on-campus bookstore, but by having Maryville College-branded apparel and memorabilia in these national and regional chains, it will be easier for people to buy our items and show their support for this excellent liberal arts college.”

T-shirts have both collegiate and athletic designs printed on them. Other items feature the College’s logo and its “Stretch Your Mind” tagline.

Every piece of merchandise will have a Maryville College-branded hang tag that includes some brief info about the school and encourages people to visit the Maryville College web site and follow the school on Facebook and Twitter.

Leidig said the items would be affordably priced.

“Certainly, we want people to wear the apparel to Maryville College athletic events and other campus events, but what we would really appreciate is for people to wear these outside the area,” she added. “Wear them shopping in the next county, wear them vacationing in another state. We want people regionally, nationally and even internationally to see the Maryville College name.”

Jed Dance, vice president of Bacon & Company, predicted that the expanded merchandise program would bring more awareness to the College, and also to Blount County.

The company is a manufacturer and distributor of licensed products, including collegiate merchandise for the University of Tennessee, the University of Alabama, Florida State University and Virginia Tech.

“Whenever you have this kind of merchandise for sale, it gives alumni and students a sense of pride,” Dance added.

Maryville College’s on-campus bookstore will continue to offer apparel and novelty items. While the bookstore will carry merchandise that is similar to items sold locally through the chain stores, its inventory is different.

Items available in the bookstore and its online store – mctnbookstore.com – include children’s clothing, sweatshirts, jackets, graduation items and, of course, textbooks and software.

The MC Bookstore also carries items made from the College’s official tartan.

Operated by Nebraska Book Company and managed by Bill Cagle, the MC Bookstore was recently recognized with a “Highest Improvement” award. The recognition was based on a measure of overall profitability for the store.

The MC Bookstore is open daily, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. It is also open on some game-day Saturdays.

To contact the bookstore, call 865.981.8080 or email bill.cagle@maryvillecollege.edu.