In cooperation with Five Ultimate
, USA Ultimate will make available for sale at both events an exclusive line of officially licensed merchandise with proceeds benefitting the Equality NC Foundation
, a Raleigh-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity dedicated to securing equal rights and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender North Carolinians.
Five Ultimate is the official apparel sponsor and merchandise provider for both events, and Discraft is the official disc of USA Ultimate.
A limited number of specially designed Discraft 175g Ultrastars will be available for a minimum donation of $15 at the Five Ultimate merchandise tent at both tournaments.
In addition to discs, a special edition of "Rohre’s Headband" will be available to participating athletes and fans attending both events. Headbands can be obtained at the USA Ultimate information tent (Division I Championships only) and the Five Ultimate merchandise tent for a minimum donation of $1.
Supporters will also be able to purchase an exclusive Five Ultimate #WeAreNotThis jersey for $35. Merchandise will only be available on site at these tournaments.
"Five is proud to stand alongside USA Ultimate and the greater ultimate community in opposition to House Bill 2," commented Vehro Titcomb, CEO of Five Ultimate. "We know that ultimate players are open-minded and welcoming people who won’t allow this discriminatory legislation within our community. We hope all players and fans will join us in showing our support of the LGBT community."
One hundred percent of gross sales from the discs and headbands, as well as $20 from each jersey sale, will be donated to the Equality NC Foundation.
"We’re so appreciative of the generous support of USA Ultimate and its partners and will be on hand to join in the festivities, May 27-30," commented Equality NC Director of Development Ben Graumann. "USA Ultimate has worked hard for a long time to instill the values of fairness and inclusion for all athletes and fans. This show of support only furthers that commitment, and we look forward to working with them. USA Ultimate is leading by example by bringing their business to North Carolina, investing in North Carolina and making North Carolina better."
As an added show of support, Discraft is producing a special edition of the official game disc that will be utilized in competition for all 200 games played at both the Division I and Division III College Championships.
"There is more than one way to voice our organization’s strong opposition to discriminatory legislation," said Tom Crawford, USA Ultimate’s chief executive officer. "One way is to not award our events to states that pass this type of legislation, and we’ll continue to factor that into our evaluation of future bids and avoid bringing our events to these states. When we cannot, due to a variety of logistical hurdles like this year in North Carolina, we’ll attempt to use our events to find creative ways to enable and empower our community to support local efforts, like those of Equality NC, to repeal the legislation. In some cases, that can be even more effective than boycotting. Many people in North Carolina have expressed to us their support for keeping both college championship events in the state, including North Carolina Ultimate and Triangle Ultimate. USA Ultimate is proud to stand beside them and our very supportive partners in Five Ultimate and Discraft to raise awareness of this issue, benefit Equality NC, and support our organization’s mission, vision and core values."