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GET OUT Sam Smith, a sophomore at St. Francis, wants others to love the outdoors as much as he does. During Covid, he started a business selling camouflage and hats.
When I was 1, I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Living with diabetes has played a very important role in how I see and live life. I look at each day as a gift and have a positive outlook. I appreciate the ability to be active and encourage others to do the same. I love being outdoors. Hunting, fishing, golf, whatever activity, as long as it is outdoors, I am all-in.
The last few Covid-19 months have been so challenging because I’ve craved being outside. I spent the first months of the pandemic, like many others, trying to fill my time. I began thinking about starting a business that would celebrate the outdoors and encourage people my age to get out and try something new, like hunting or fishing. I decided I would create an online apparel company specializing in hats.
In May of 2020, I began Southern Banks. Of course, I had no budget for advertising (or anything else), so I decided I would use social media as my platform. I placed my first order and began posting on Instagram (@southernbanksco). Southern Banks hit the ground running! In just a few months, we now have over 7,000 followers on Instagram and have sold hundreds of hats. While starting Southern Banks has been a blast, it has also exposed hunting, fishing, and the benefits of an outdoor life to people my age. There is so much more to do than just stare at your phone or computer.
I think people who tend not to be active view my posts on Instagram and are encouraged to become more active. They also get to see the beauty of nature in my posts and realize there is so much more than just city life. I hope others will share my passion for the outdoors.
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