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Bates Sponsors Armed Forces Night at Fifth Third Ballpark

Posted On Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Grab your peanuts and crackerjacks and head to Fifth Third Ballpark on Saturday, May 16 to be a part of Armed Forces Night. The West Michigan Whitecaps will be taking on the Lansing Lugnuts at 7:00 p.m. on this special day that honors past and present service members.

As part of the Armed Forces Night celebration, the first 1,000 people to enter through the gates will receive a complimentary t-shirt from Bates, and all guests will enjoy special promotions including a 50/50 raffle, mascot battle and post-game fireworks.

Something unique to this year’s Armed Forces Night is Bates partnering with the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans. Bates will be bussing a group of veterans to and from the game, so they can enjoy a fun evening that recognizes their hard work and dedication to our country. In addition to attending the game, local veterans will be throwing out the first pitch, as well as participating in on-field promotions through out the evening.

Armed Forces Day is celebrated annually on the third Saturday of May as part of Armed Forces Week and Military Appreciation Month. This is the 10th year that Bates has sponsored this promotion at Fifth Third Ballpark.

To purchase your tickets visit

Bates Participates in Police Week Festivities

Posted On Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Bates is headed to Washington D.C to participate in National Police Week. This annual week that honors survivors and supporters of law enforcement draws between 25,000-40,000 attendees from around the world. The week provides a unique opportunity for those in law enforcement to gather and honor those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.

During the week, various events take place including a National Peace Officers’ Memorial Service, a candlelight vigil, receptions and a vendor expo. Bates will be on hand for the expo taking place May 13-15 at the FOP Lodge in Washington DC. Bates along with hundreds of other vendors will be showcasing product and giving away promotional items. The expo will also feature food and beverages along with music and entertainment. The festivities will take place from 11:00 a.m. until 2 a.m.

For a complete schedule of National Police Week activities visit


Bates Gives Back for Military Appreciation Month

Posted On Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Bates recognizes National Military Appreciation Month as a way to honor, remember, and appreciate those who have served and those serving in the United States military. As a way to give back during the month of May, Bates is donating a portion of all online sales at to the Boot Campaign.

Established in 2009, the Boot Campaign is a national charitable organization dedicated to raising awareness of the unique challenges service members face during and post-service. The non-profit organization also provides assistance to military personnel, past and present, and their families. These programs aim to bridge the gap between government military assistance programs and the reality that veterans face when returning home. Every pair of boots sold during the month of May on will help fund these assistance programs.

Read the stories of war veterans that have directly benefited from the Boot Campaign at


Bates Launches Anti-Fatigue Boots with New Technology

Posted On Sunday, April 26, 2015

Comfort meets function with Bates newest line of products, the Strike 6” and 8” anti-fatigue boot. Both styles feature black waterproof leather and membrane, a YKK nylon side zipper, and a multi terrain slip resistant rubber lug outsole.

“The development objective of the Strike boot was to create a highly durable waterproof boot that is both breathable and comfortable,” said Eric Fracassi, Product Development Director, Bates Footwear. “We’ve achieved that in an amazing looking boot and the features and benefits really set us apart from the competition.”

The unique technology that creates this long lasting comfort is Bates Endurance Performance System. Developed to deliver extreme cushion and durability, this four-part technology works inside of the boot to provide all day comfort.

The first layer is the durable rubber lug outsole. The slip resistant outsole is long wearing with a multi terrain design that provides superior traction and stability. The second layer features a nylon shank that adds both support and stability. Following the shank is a dual density EVA midsole that mitigates shock and redistributes pressure. Lastly the dual density foot bed includes memory foam and provides arch support and cushion.

Consumers and industry professionals received their first look at the Strike product in January at the SHOT (Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade) Show in Las Vegas, Nevada. The boots garnered positive reviews for their stylish appearance as well as the extreme comfort and breathability they provide. Strike product will be available May 1, 2015 online and at retailers across the country.


Bates Introduces Young People to the Law Enforcement Field

Posted On Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Grand Rapids Police Department is looking for young people, ages 14-21 years old, to participate in the 2015 Police Explorer program. This educational program is all about helping young adults make a more informed decision about their future career and determine if it’s the right one for them.

The law enforcement field offers many careers including police officers, sheriffs, federal agents, probation officers, highway patrol and corrections officers. Through the Police Explorer program, students learn about each of these career paths, as well as leadership skills, law enforcement protocols, marksmanship, and become familiar with the educational requirements for a career in the field.

The five pillars of the program are:

1.     Career Opportunities

2.     Leadership Experience

3.     Life Skills

4.     Citizenship

5.     Character Education

Grand Rapids Police Department is now taking applications for the program and scholarships are available. 25 students will be selected for participation. Bates Footwear will be sponsoring the students by donating a pair of 8” Tactical Sport Composite Toe Side Zip boots as part of their uniform.

The program is a win-win for both students, the Grand Rapids Police Department, and sponsors alike. The youth get practical, real-world career exploration, the police department cultivates future employees, and sponsors such as Bates are able to help make a positive impression on young people within our community. For more information on this program visit

Documentary Crew Wears Recondos During Honduran Expedition

Posted On Tuesday, April 07, 2015

For hundreds of years explorers and have told tales of a lost city in the Honduran jungle. Stories tell of a “white house” or “place of cacao” where Indians took refuge from Spanish conquistadores in an Eden-like mystical paradise. Since 1920 explorers have searched for proof of this city, but have had no luck.

In February, an exploration team decided to take a stab at finding this undisturbed Central American lost city.  Filmmakers Steve Elkins and Bill Benenson launched a search for the lost city and rallied a team of experts for their mission.

But first, they contacted Bates for the best footwear options. Knowing they would be traveling through dense jungle terrain, they had their eyes on the Recondo. The Recondo is Bates 21st century jungle boot that was developed for Special Forces working in wet, tropical environments. Bates outfitted six team members on the film crew with Recondos in exchange for photos of the mission, and feedback on the boots.

The team consisted of American and Honduran archaeologists, an engineer, an anthropologist and an ethnobotanist. They team was accompanied by Honduran Special Forces soldiers, support personal, and a photographer and writer form National Geographic Magazine.

The explorers were lead to the remote, uninhabited region by helicopter where a landing zone had to be cleared in advanced. This area was so primitive that the animals appeared to have never seen humans before. The team surveyed and mapped the land where the city existed thousands of years ago. What they found were tops of 52 artifacts, sculptures, and objects that are believed to date back to A.D.1000-1400. Their findings were evidence of a Mesoamerican city and proof that a “white house” or “place of cacao” truly did exist.

Upon returning to the United States last week, an email from the production company states, “We are very appreciative for your support and contribution of the Recondo boots. They were just right for the conditions.”

National Geographic Magazine will be publishing a story and photographs of the mission in approximately three months. UTL Productions is also in the process of working on the documentary that was filmed during the expedition.

 **Photos courtesy of Dave Yoder, National Geographic Magazine

Bates Teams Up With [FHH] For Limited Edition Boot

Posted On Thursday, September 11, 2014

Fashion Has Heart [FHH] brought together five wounded Veterans from their 2014 HERO[series] project with Bates Footwear, the leading military footwear supplier to the U.S. Armed Forces, to create a Limited Edition boot. To commemorate the anniversary of 9/11, an event that led many of the Heroes to enlist and serve their country, [FHH] will release a limited amount of pairs for sale online at The purpose behind this 9/11 release is to build awareness within the civilian population of what it might be like to imagine walking in the shoes of a Veteran of War.

This hybrid-style boot was inspired by what it might look like if a Bates' military combat boot was combined with their traditional military dress uniform shoes. A boot designed to be either dressed-up or dressed-down, it acts as a daily reminder to honor the sacrifice of all Veterans -- past, present, and future. 100% of the boot's components were made in the USA, with every detail having a meaningful story behind it:

•    FIVE STARS: Five embossed stars on the heel represent the five U.S. Military Branches.
•    LINING: Traditional "Olive Drap" colored mesh symbolizes basic training and the work ethic that is required to serve and protect this country.
•    SPEEDHOOKS: Symbolize wounded Veterans living with, adapting to, and overcoming their injuries.
•    EYELETS: Matte black represents stealth and armor, key military strategies and tactics.
•    WELT STITCH: Red thread honors the sacrifice of Veterans who have served, been injured, or killed in action.
•    CAMOUFLAGE: Specialty camo used on Black Ops uniforms symbolizes the innovations of modern warfare as well as the traditional, timeless, and functional military styling.
•    MADE IN USA: A proud stamp to represent the hundreds of hands that touched this boot, from each individual component produced to its final manufacturing process.

Since [FHH] is able to bring its boots directly from the factory to its consumers, these Limited Edition boots only cost $150. Otherwise, retail price for this caliber of footwear would cost between $280-$320. Genuine welted construction, and produced alongside other well-respected boots such as the Wolverine 1000 Mile collection, the quality and durability of these boots will ensure that they can last for years. Purchase a pair of these exclusive [FHH] boots on now. Limited to 100 pairs ranging from Men's sizes 6-12, they won't last long.

Launching on September 24th during ArtPrize in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the five Veterans will exhibit their work with their graphic artist partner in which they created a t-shirt design that tells their powerful story and message. Additionally, the Heroes worked with five footwear design students from Kendall College of Art and Design to conceptualize their ideal military-inspired boot. The [FHH] ArtPrize exhibit will be hosted at 22 Sheldon Ave NE on the grounds of the Veterans Memorial Park.

Bates Footwear Unveils Jungle Boot for the 21st Century

Posted On Tuesday, July 08, 2014

ROCKFORD, MI (July 7, 2014) – Bates Footwear, a division of Wolverine Worldwide (NYSE: WWW) announces the launch of the Recondo jungle boot a low-absorption, quick drying, durable solution designed to provide secure footing in multi-terrain jungle regions. Named for the Reconnaissance and Commando Training Course developed in the 1950s at Fort Campbell, the Recondo meets the need for a Berry Compliant jungle/tropical combat boot for today’s warfighters and peacekeepers.

To meet the demands of today’s evolving asymmetrical threats, Bates partnered with the United States Army Special Forces Command (USASFC) to develop the Recondo. Bates received valuable performance feedback after the 75th Army Ranger Regiment tested the Recondo in Central America during the winter of 2014.  As a result, the Recondo boot delivers an exclusive lighter weight, quick drying durable leather and textile upper and has been designed to provide the best breathability possible for the spectrum of jungle combat situations.

"The Recondo provides a much needed jungle boot update for the next generation of our armed services," said Bates Footwear President Onder Ors. "Based on the specific feedback we received from our development partners in the Special Operations Forces, Bates has created the only boot specifically engineered for hot, wet and humid combat environments common in tropical regions."

The Recondo boot is made with Wolverine Warrior Leather™ which is lighter more durable, breathable, and is water, stain, and oil resistant. The MultiCam® ripstop nylon fabric enhances performance as it is lightweight, abrasion resistant, and highly durable. The blended upper material is light, strong, comfortable and has near infrared properties (NIR) making the boot less visible in low light environments.

The Recondo utilizes a unique lacing system developed based on feedback from operators and incorporates Bates’ many years of experience with lace-to-toe styles. This assures that all users can easily utilize the speed lace system and achieve proper fit and closure.

The design of the solid rubber outsole is the Vibram® Mutant, which has a deeper, more aggressive lug depth for off road traction, a multi-directional leading edged that enhance slip-resisting properties, and a rounded heel for natural touch down. This sole design has also incorporated a customized rubber compound that is durable enough to withstand Special Operations Forces use in hot weather, temperate weather, and mountainous operational environments.

The Recondo boot is being officially launched at ADS Warrior Expo East in Virginia Beach, VA, on July 10th and 11th.  This premiere industry event brings end users, program managers, and procurement specialists together with industry-leading solutions providers in an environment designed specifically for government and defense organizations. The Recondo will be available for purchase beginning Fall 2014. Visit for more information on the event.

About Bates Footwear

Bates Footwear is a division of Wolverine World Wide, Inc. based in Rockford, Michigan. Wolverine employs over 8,000 people globally, including nearly 6,000 in the United States. Bates is dedicated to manufacturing military footwear and has been manufacturing in the United States for nearly 130 years. Bates is one of the largest footwear suppliers to the DoD and has industry-unique R+D capabilities that are continuously focused on providing American warfighters with a combat advantage.

About ADS, Inc.

ADS, Inc. is a leading solutions provider proudly serving all branches of the U.S. Military, federal, state, and local government organizations, law enforcement, first responders, foreign governments, and the defense industry. ADS is focused on solving our customer’s challenges through the largest product and service selection, the broadest array of procurement and contract options, world-class support and logistics solutions, and legendary customer service.  We provide a single source solution that helps customers meet their mission requirements as cost-effectively as possible, reduce their cost of readiness, and enhance their acquisition strategy.  ADS equipment and support solutions include C4ISR, Combat Support, Medical, Operational Clothing and Individual Equipment (OCIE), Weapons, and Optics as well as Special Missions such as CWMD, EOD, First Responders, and Maritime. - Our Purpose. Your Mission.



Wolverine Worldwide Hails Defense Department Policy Change to Purchase US-Made Athletic Footwear

Posted On Thursday, May 08, 2014

Office of the Secretary of Defense Directs the Armed Services to Comply with Existing Law and Procure American-made Athletic Footwear

Rockford, Michigan, April 28, 2014 — Wolverine Worldwide (NYSE: WWW) today commends the Department of Defense for updating the policy regarding the acquisition of athletic shoes for military recruits.  In a letter to members of the Armed Services Committees, the Deputy Secretary of Defense confirmed a policy change that requires new recruits to use their footwear allowance to purchase U.S.-made athletic footwear that is compliant with the Berry Amendment, once they are available in the marketplace.  

For the past several years, Wolverine Worldwide has urged the Pentagon to procure athletic footwear manufactured in the United States, rather than purchasing foreign-made products. This policy change will ensure that the Armed Services are not dependent on foreign sources for essential basic training needs and will significantly help support the U.S. supply chain for American-made shoes.

This policy correction will help strengthen and support the domestic industrial base and the thousands of manufacturing jobs that provide the necessary equipment for the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Special Forces, with no additional cost to the taxpayer.   It also strengthens the ability of industry to provide the full spectrum of footwear needs of the Armed Services, from combat boots to athletic shoes. 

“I am grateful that the Department of Defense has recognized the importance of providing the Armed Services with athletic footwear made in the United States,” said Blake Krueger, Wolverine Worldwide Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.  “Our Saucony, Merrell and Bates brands have partnered together to advance this effort and we are well into the process of producing state-of-the art athletic shoes at our manufacturing plant in Michigan. Wolverine Worldwide is committed to utilizing the full research and development capabilities of our entire corporation to support the training needs of those who serve our country.” 

With a commitment to service and product excellence, Wolverine World Wide, Inc. is one of the world’s leading marketers of branded casual, active lifestyle, work, outdoor sport, athletic, children’s and uniform footwear and apparel.  The Company’s portfolio of highly recognized brands includes: Merrell®, Sperry Top-Sider®, Hush Puppies®, Saucony®, Wolverine®, Keds®, Stride Rite®, Sebago®, Cushe®, Chaco®, Bates®, HYTEST®, and Soft Style®.  The Company also is the global footwear licensee of popular brands including Cat®, Harley-Davidson® and Patagonia®. The Company’s products are carried by leading retailers in the U.S. and globally in approximately 200 countries and territories. For additional information, please visit our website,