When the Iowa Heartlanders open the 2023-24 season at home this Thursday and Friday, the team you’ll see on the ice promises to be new and exciting. The same can’t be said about the merchandise.
Beginning on his first day as President of the Iowa Heartlanders on September 6, Matt Getz has quickly gone to work laying the groundwork for the Iowa Heartlanders to become what he calls “a valuable community asset.” In some instances, laying the groundwork will first require some demolition. With over 1,000 pieces of existing inventory – much of which has been for sale since the inaugural season in 2021 - selling all remaining inventory to make room for new items is the first necessary step. To accomplish that quickly, the Heartlanders will be marking down nearly all non-jersey items to $10 or less at their home games this Thursday and Friday. Once the existing merchandise has been sold, new product lines will be brought in.
“When I first started digging into the merchandising operations, I was told by almost everyone that there hasn’t been anything new available for sale in a long, long time. As an organization trying to build a brand in a community that doesn’t yet know they love hockey, having people wear our apparel in their everyday lives is a critical step in the process of exposure and recognition. It’s imperative that we have new, fresh – are the kids still saying that? – merchandise that people will want to wear proudly. Making that happen is one of my top 3 priorities.”
A mantra continually preached by Getz is that the Heartlanders will not sacrifice excellence in anything they do. “We want to build something special, and that requires that everything be done the correct way. There are no shortcuts to excellence. In that vein, we are nearing the end of an extensive, weeks-long search for the right merchandise partner to provide the quality, innovative products and shopping experience that our fans deserve, as well as a vendor who will be appropriately responsive to the consumer desires of our fans. We’re getting close to a plan that we believe will deliver on those expectations.”
While the new merchandising arrangement is being finalized, the Heartlanders want to set accurate expectations for fans looking to purchase merchandise while attending this week’s games inside Xtream Arena, as well as those looking to buy online. Here is what fans attending this week’s games can expect:
- Jerseys will be available for purchase at regular price at both Thursday, Oct. 19th and Friday, Oct. 20th games.
- With very few exceptions, all non-jersey items will be marked down to $10.
- All current inventory is available only in person (no online option) at The Silo, the Heartlanders’ team store inside Xtream Arena.
- The team store will open at 5:30 pm each night, one hour prior to the scheduled puck drop.
The Heartlanders hope to have new merchandise available for sale at the next home series, which begins on Wednesday, November 8th at 6:35 pm against Kalamazoo. This is anticipated to include both in-person and online options. “The opening day merchandising experience is not going to be what I had hoped for when I started here 7 weeks ago, but we’re making the correct moves to realize that vision. I continue to be thrilled to work as part of an organization that is so open to embracing change and wanting to win every day, in every facet of what we do. Eventually, our logo will become synonymous with that level of excellence. I’m excited for that day to get here and for our fans to proudly showcase that through what they wear.”
The 2023-24 Heartlanders promise to be new and exciting. The same can’t be said about the merchandise…..yet.