Located in a small buiding in the center of Government Camp, Oregon is Burton Snowboard's new demo center. The center has had Burton's 2000 snowboard product on display for the entire summer, and anyone attending the different snowboard camps or getting some summer riding at Timberline Ski Area on Mt. Hood can demo the product. The best part: it's free of charge (as long as the rider has a credit card).
“We've been going to Hood for ten years, working with camps and using Timberline for media promotions, to film, train the team, and conduct research and development,” says Barry Dugan, Burton's marketing manager in charge of team and promotions. “Now the Demo Center is like setting up a tech shop. That helps us present product to techs and riders. We also do durability testing and tune products, and that keeps the house as just a team hangout area.” And a team house without a huge clutter of equipment.
This is the first season Burton has rented the building and set up shop. “It's essentially a flagship store,” says Dugan, adding that the center lets the company get direct feedback from riders during a critical time when product decisions are being finalized.
After riding new product, riders come back to the center and fill out questionnaires about what they liked and disliked. “The Demo Center is the extension of Burton's rider-driven design philosophy,” says Dugan.
According to Burton, since opening in early June, roughly 200 people demo new product every week. Another 100 or so have come in to check out the new line or use the warranty services. The demo center will close at the end of August when the camps close for the season.